Politics & Issues

Ferguson
1:07 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Missouri Black Legislators Want Arrest Charges Dropped For Non-Violent Protesters

Missouri Capitol
Credit (Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

The Missouri General Assembly’s 19-member Black Legislative Caucus is asking that Ferguson drop the charges for non-violent protesters who have been arrested since demonstrations began following the Aug. 9 shooting that killed Michael Brown.

In a release issued Monday, the caucus called for the city to set up “a restorative justice plan in lieu of municipal fines for the non-violent protesters that have been arrested.”

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Michael Brown
10:39 am
Mon November 17, 2014

Wilson Could Go Free Even If Convicted, Legal Experts Say

Credit sxc.hu

(Updated at 3:25 p.m., Mon., Nov. 17)

An outdated Missouri law that allows police to shoot an unarmed fleeing felon could help Officer Darren Wilson avoid an indictment and prison, legal experts say.

If St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch advises the grand jury to follow the outdated law, he would be reducing the chances of an indictment. Wilson could be viewed as acting in line with state law when he shot unarmed Michael Brown after he began to flee.  

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2016 Race For Governor
12:58 am
Mon November 17, 2014

Bond Supporting Hanaway In Her 2016 Bid For Governor

Christopher Bond
Credit (UPI)

Former Missouri House Speaker Catherine Hanaway, the only announced Republican candidate for governor, has the support of one of the state’s political icons who used to be her boss: Former U.S. Sen. Christopher “Kit” Bond, R-Mo.

Bond and his wife, Linda Bond, are special guests at a reception/fundraiser Tuesday in Kansas City for Hanaway.

Before she ran for office herself,  Hanaway worked for Bond in the mid-1990s.  He has been a key mentor for her, and among those backing her presidential appointment in 2005 as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District, based in St. Louis.

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Waiting For A Decision
9:37 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

Antonio French Thinks Grand Jury May Indict Darren Wilson

St. Louis Alderman Antonio French documents a Ferguson press conference in August.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum/St. Louis Public Radio

Many protest leaders in and around Ferguson have expressed doubt that the grand jury will indict Darren Wilson for the death of Michael Brown.

But St. Louis Alderman Antonio French says he thinks an indictment is possible.

“I have not given up hope that there will be an indictment,” French said. “I think the evidence warrants at least a trial. And I think ultimately that’s what the community needs in order to heal the long-term wounds.”

French does agree with the general consensus that if the grand jury does not indict Wilson there will be large-scale protests.

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One Ferguson Open House
9:36 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

Community Group Hopes To Bridge Racial, Economic Divides In Ferguson

Adrienne Hawkins of One Ferguson speaks during a recent Ferguson City Council meeting.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum/St. Louis Public Radio

Protests in Ferguson after the death of Michael Brown have brought to light long-held racial tensions and community divisions, both in the city of Ferguson, and the whole St. Louis region.

A new organization called One Ferguson hopes to help bridge those divides.

“Everything from courageous conversations about race, to different perceptions between the races, it’s just a huge, huge task,” said Bev Walker, a One Ferguson steering committee member.

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An Eye To Legislation
9:33 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

With Lame Duck Session Underway, McCaskill Weighs In On Iraq, Immigration

Credit Sen. McCaskill's Flickr page

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) says President Obama’s strategy on Iraq seems to be working and should be allowed more time to succeed. McCaskill, who serves on the Armed Services Committee, was a guest Sunday on “Face the Nation.”

When asked whether the U.S. should think about sending American troops into Iraq, the Missouri Democrat said she thinks air strikes have been effective in slowing ISIS down, and that she supports forming partnerships with moderate Sunnis.

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On The Trail
6:07 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

Study To Examine How St. Louis Region Should Police Itself

Chuck Wexler, the executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum, is leading a study for Better Together about how the region's policing agencies should be structured.
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

When Better Together formed last year, it was already planning to examine how the region polices itself — especially because St. Louis County has so many different departments that patrol towns and cities.

But the review became more than just a theoretical exercise after the shooting death of Michael Brown. The roughly 60 police departments throughout St. Louis County underwent intense scrutiny for aggressive ticketing, little racial diversity and the targeting of African Americans. There have been widespread calls for substantial changes.

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Distribution Center Closings
11:03 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

St. Louis Postal Workers Protest Possible Increase In Mail Delivery Time

Postal workers protest the consolidation of mail distribution centers outside the main post office in downtown St. Louis Friday, November 14, 2014, saying they will lower service standards.
Credit Camille Phillips/St. Louis Public Radio

Carrying signs that read “Save Our Service,” dozens of postal workers braved the cold to march in front of the main post office in downtown St. Louis Friday.  They’re afraid that overnight mail delivery will cease to exist next year when up to 82 mail processing centers are scheduled to close nationwide, including those in Cape Girardeau and Springfield, Mo.

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Government Ethics
8:30 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Opinions Differ On When Government Is Working, And When It's Not

The Missouri Capitol Building
Credit Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

Dysfunction in government is in the eyes of the beholder.

That, in essence, was the upshot of Friday’s Third Annual Ethics Conference at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. 

What some speakers viewed as dysfunction, others saw as evidence of proper government action – or restraint.

Take, for example, the four-person panel of Republican and Democratic state lawmakers, past and present.

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Fear And Hope
5:16 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Waiting For The Grand Jury: Ferguson, Police, Protesters Prepare

Christine LaPorta has lived in Ferguson for 21 years.
Credit Emanuele Berry | St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis region looks and feels as though it’s preparing for a big storm. When you drive down West Florissant Avenue in Ferguson, most of the store fronts are covered with plywood. Some nearby municipalities are even telling residents stock up on food, gas and supplies. All of this is in preparation for a possible storm of a different kind.

Listen To an Audio Version of This Story Here

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