Politics & Issues

Berkeley Shooting
6:00 pm
Wed December 24, 2014

Politicians, Others React To Death Of Antonio Martin

Mayor Hoskins,surrounded by Berkeley City Council, stressed the Dec. 23 2014 shooting of Antonio Martin was unlike Michael Brown's death in Ferguson
Credit Willis Ryder Arnold/St. Louis Public Radio

The death of 18-year-old Antonio Martin at the hands of a white Berkeley police officer is drawing more muted responses than the shooting death this summer of Michael Brown.

Gov. Jay Nixon released a very brief statement Wednesday, saying that "the events in Berkeley are a reminder that law enforcement officers have a difficult, and often dangerous, job in protecting themselves and law-abiding citizens."  None of the St. Louis-area's U.S. Congressmen or Senators made any public comments.

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Police Shooting
3:44 pm
Wed December 24, 2014

Businesses In Berkeley Hold Their Breath, Hopeful Neighborhood Will Stay Peaceful

Dennis Yi-Adams is a tattoo artist at Urban Expressions, located near the shooting site. He said business has dropped off considerably in recent months.
Credit Tim Lloyd / St. Louis Public Radio

In the parking lot of a small strip mall across the street from the Mobil station in Berkeley where the police shooting of 18-year-old Antonio Martin took place this morning, television crews from national networks were setting up and a few protesters milled around this morning.

“It’s Christmas, we’ll pray for peace,” said Tom Kiely, who owns the strip mall.   

For now, Kiely said he doesn’t plan on boarding up storefronts -- like many of the businesses in nearby Ferguson have done. But that could change.

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Law Enforcement
2:59 pm
Wed December 24, 2014

St. Louis Area Police Give Away $100 Bills

Logos of the St. Louis County and St. Louis Metropolitan Police.
Credit St. Louis County website / file photo

Thousands of people in St. Louis and St. Louis County are a hundred dollars richer after police in both jurisdictions handed out $100 bills Tuesday as part of a one-day Secret Santa blitz.

Joseph Higgs from south St. Louis was one of the people who received the cash.

Higgs said that he has had more negative than positive experiences with police in the past so this experience has helped improve his opinion of law enforcement.

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Berkeley Shooting
6:34 am
Wed December 24, 2014

Black 18-Year-Old Shot And Killed In Berkeley After He Allegedly Points Gun At Officer

St. Louis County police chief Jon Belmar speaks to reporters on Dec. 24, 2014 about the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Antonio Martin by a Berkeley police officer. Berkeley chief Frank McCall looks on.
Credit (UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

(Updated at 2:55 p.m., Wed., Dec. 24 with additional surveillance video)

(You can also follow live updates related to this story on our live blog).

St. Louis County police are investigating another fatal officer-involved shooting in north St. Louis County.

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12:57 am
Wed December 24, 2014

McCulloch Has No Regrets: 'I Did What I Thought Was Right'

Bob McCulloch
Credit Bill Greenblatt | UPI

St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch says he’s not surprised by the scrutiny his office continues to receive as a result of the grand jury decision a month ago not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown.

In fact, McCulloch observed in an interview Tuesday that his staff is conducting its own examination of how the office handled the investigation of the Ferguson shooting on Aug. 9, which touched off months of unrest – locally and around the world.

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Politically Speaking
10:21 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

Politically Speaking: Rep. Allen On Costs Of Medicaid — And Impact Of Term Limits

Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

On this week’s edition of Politically Speaking, St. Louis Public Radio reporters Jason Rosenbaum and Jo Mannies welcome state Rep. Sue Allen to the show for the first time. (The show’s pre-eminent host, St. Louis Public Radio’s Chris McDaniel, is taking it easy after battling an illness.)  

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Larry Rice
5:36 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

New Life Evangelistic Center To Close In May Unless Changes Are Made

Protests erupted after the Board of Public Service ruled on Dec. 23 that the New Life Evangelistic Center is a detriment to the neighborhood and will have to close in May unless it makes changes.
Credit (Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

The city's Board of Public Service has ruled that the emergency homeless shelter at the New Life Evangelistic Center is a detriment to the neighborhood and must close in May unless it changes the way it operates.

Tuesday's unanimous vote by the board provoked shouts of "Shame!" and "What would Jesus do!" from a standing-room-only crowd, followed by chants of "homeless lives matter!" Crowd members also accused the board of holding an illegal meeting because they allowed no time for public comment. 

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Beyond Ferguson
4:13 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

'I Love Ferguson' Committee Gives To North County Reconstruction Effort

Former Ferguson Mayor Brian Fletcher holds a big $50,000 check symbolizing a $50,000 donation to Reinvest North County. Fletcher's group -- I Love Ferguson -- raised the money through selling t-shirts, mugs and hats.
Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

It’s been a few months since a group called I Love Ferguson started selling t-shirts, mugs and hats aimed at boosting the beleaguered town.

Since then, former Ferguson Mayor Brian Fletcher said the committee’s wares have been sold worldwide.

“We’ve shipped shirts to the United Kingdom, Italy and France. Our products are in 33 different countries,” said Fletcher, who is part of the I Love Ferguson committee. “They’ve been sent by relatives or they’ve been picked up at the I Love Ferguson store and brought back to those countries.”

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Beyond Ferguson
10:48 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Lawmakers Produce Ideas Responding To Ferguson Unrest — But Can They Deliver?

Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

Just after the sun set on Nov. 24 — the day that then-Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson’s fate would be disclosed to the world — Missouri's Gov. Jay Nixon faced a throng of reporters at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. 

Appearing before cameras that would simulcast his words across the globe, the Democratic governor talked  at length about how law enforcement officials were ready to respond to the grand jury’s decision. 

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10:30 pm
Mon December 22, 2014

Commentary: Germany Has A Lesson For St. Louis City And County

Berlin 1986
Credit selbst fotografiert | Wikipedia

People in Berlin and throughout Germany recently celebrated the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. These commemorations should prompt some reflection closer to home, specifically on the state of local government in the St. Louis area. Doing so raises a fundamental question: If it’s possible for East and West Germany to be reunited, why can’t there be meaningful municipal reorganizations in St. Louis city and county? Whatever barriers we perceive in our community are minuscule in comparison with those that had to be dismantled in Germany.

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