American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri | St. Louis Public Radio

American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri

St. Louis city police officers detain protesters downtown on Sept. 15, 2017 after the acquittal of Jason Stockley was announced.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis aldermen are weighing whether to put new limits on the way the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department interacts with protesters.

The Public Safety committee on Tuesday heard two hours of testimony in support of the bill sponsored by Alderwoman Megan Green, D-15th Ward. It’s modeled on an ordinance in place in Washington, D.C.

Drawing of child and scales of justice
Susannah Lohr | St. Louis Public Radio

Black students in Missouri are four and a half times more likely to be suspended than white students, according to a report released Thursday by the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri.

The ACLU also found that black students with disabilities are more than three times as likely to be suspended as white students with disabilities.

The chronically underfunded Missouri public defender system is now dealing with another vexing issue: the prospect that its overworked attorneys could be punished for not keeping up with their workloads. And that's leading to a growing standoff between judges and public defender attorneys.

The issue surfaced after the Missouri Supreme Court last month suspended a 21-year veteran of the public defender’s office in Columbia who was laboring under a huge caseload and was hospitalized due to chronic health problems.

Police dressed in riot gear gathered on Tucker Boulevard on Sept. 15, the day Jason Stockley was acquitted of first-degree murder in the 2011 death of Anthony Lamar Smith.
File photo | Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

 

Updated Sept. 27 with response from St. Louis officials — The City of St. Louis has asked the federal government to help with an independent investigation into two lawsuits and several complaints stemming from police response to protests that followed the acquittal of Jason Stockley, Mayor Lyda Krewson and interim Police Chief Larry O’Toole said Wednesday.

In a statement, the two said the investigation would focus on police conduct during the protests since the Sept. 15 decision, the dozen “grievances” filed with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department’s Internal Affairs Division and the two federal lawsuits.

State court rejects request by Wilson grand juror to speak about the process.

Dec 15, 2016
St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch announces on Nov 24, 2014, that the grand jury declined to indict Darren Wilson on any of five counts that were presented to it.
File photo | Bill Greenblatt | UPI

This story has been updated to reflect events since it was initially published. A member of the grand jury that decided not to charge former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in the August 2014 death of Michael Brown will not be able to share information about that experience.

A St. Louis County judge dismissed the grand juror’s suit on Tuesday. Judge Ellen Ribaudo wrote that the juror had not shown why the state laws around grand jury secrecy should not apply in his or her case. And while prosecutor Bob McCulloch chose to make some evidence from the grand jury public, Ribaudo said, not every detail needed to be released.

Adrian Wright, a former mayor of Pine Lawn, says his political opponent used the city's police department as a tool of political intimidation. Adolphus Pruitt of the NAACP is at left.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

The American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri has sued the city of Pine Lawn for using its police department as a tool of political intimidation.

The federal lawsuit filed Tuesday centers around the 2013 race for mayor between Sylvester Caldwell, who was the incumbent, and challenger Nakisha Ford, who was backed by former mayor and councilman Adrian Wright.

Mayor Francis Slay, left, and St. Louis Metropolitan Police Chief Sam Dotson unveil the new Real Time Crime Center at police headquarters.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis Metropolitan Police will get a new tool this summer to help battle crime. Media got a preview Thursday of the Real Time Crime Center, on the sixth floor of police headquarters at 1915 Olive.

Paul Sableman | Flickr

Five license plate recognition cameras paid for by the civic booster organization Downtown STL Inc. will be installed in downtown this month.

Missy Kelley, the chief operating officer for the organization formerly known as the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis, would not say where the cameras will be placed, or give an exact date for activation. Downtown STL Inc. spent about $66,000 on the cameras.

(via Wikimedia Commons/Glenn Francis, www.PacificProDigital.com)

Updated April 7, 2015 with court ruling allowing Flynt to intervene.

A federal appeals court has given Hustler publisher Larry Flynt the right to ask that certain records in two court cases challenging Missouri's execution process be unsealed.

The unsigned opinion issued Tuesday by a panel of the 8th Circuit does not make the documents public. It simply gives Flynt the right to argue that they should not be kept secret. 

Jeffrey Mittman
Provided by the ACLU | 2013

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: If you think that the American Civil Liberties Union takes on only cases of grand constitutional significance, a quick look at its recent docket from the St. Louis area is likely to change your mind.

Are you allowed to flash your lights to warn an oncoming driver about a speed trap? Do you need to show you’re really talented to perform on the street? Can neighborhood regulations keep a political sign out of your yard?