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St. Louis Police Department

Chief John Hayden said police believed the rash of killings over the weekend  to be drug related in a press conference on Monday.
Wiley Price | St. Louis American

St. Louis Police suspect four of six killings over the past weekend were drug-related, Chief John Hayden said Monday.

Drugs were found at two of the crime scenes, but police would not identify them. All the victims were found shot in their cars.

File photo | Alex Heuer | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis began 2018 with a brand-new police chief, John Hayden, in place – and with a double homicide occurring on New Year’s Day. Three months later, the city’s high rate of violent crime remains a key challenge along with the need to rebuild trust with citizens in the wake of protests.

Both issues loomed large on Monday’s St. Louis on the Air as Hayden discussed his leadership of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department thus far.

Maj. John Hayden, left, commander of the St. Louis police department's North Patrol Division, and Chief Patrick Melvin, of the Port Arthur Police Department in Texas, center, and interim St. Louis Police Chief Lawrence O'Toole.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Three outside candidates are among the six people vying to be the next chief of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

Those six people introduced themselves to the public Thursday night at a public forum at Saint Louis University law school.

Lt. Col. Lawrence O’Toole

O’Toole, a 33-year veteran of the SLMPD, has been interim chief since April, when Sam Dotson retired suddenly on Mayor Lyda Krewson’s first day in office.

Jeff Roorda, the St. Louis Police Officers' Association's business manager, and Alderman Joe Vaccaro, receive the news that Prop P passed. Nov. 7, 2017
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated 12:15 a.m., Nov. 8, with additional comments — Police and firefighters in St. Louis will get a $6,000 raise in July, after voters on Tuesday easily approved a half-cent sales tax hike.

The tax increase measure, known as Proposition P, passed with close to 60 percent of the vote. It will kick in in early 2018, and is expected to generate about $20 million a year. Most of the money will go toward the raises, though the circuit attorney’s office will receive about $1.3 million.

Gov. Eric Greitens speaks at a news conference Thursday night alongside Christina Wilson, the fiancee of Anthony Lamar Smith.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Republican Gov. Eric Greitens and St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, a Democrat, promised during their recent campaigns to make people feel safe.

Last week’s acquittal of a white ex-police officer of the first-degree murder of a black man is putting their words to the test, and activists and elected officials aren’t sure Greitens and Krewson are earning passing grades.

A demonstrator waves a flag from a minivan during protests Sunday evening over the acquittal of former St. Louis cop Jason Stockey. A third day of protests started peacefully before a smaller group smashed windows downtown.
Ryan Delaney | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 3:25 p.m. Sept. 18 with release of Post-Dispatch reporter — More than 80 people were arrested Sunday night, St. Louis police said, long after the official — and peaceful — protests ended. The last group of people to be arrested downtown were boxed in by police and sprayed with a chemical agent, a livestream showed, and a St. Louis Post-Dispatch staffer tweeted that one of their reporters was among them. A Post-Dispatch editor this morning announced that reporter Mike Faulk has been released.

Protesters march on Delmar Boulevard
Lawrence Bryant | St. Louis American

 

 

Updated at 11:25 p.m. with new details from evening protests — A second full day of outrage over former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley’s acquittal in the 2011 fatal shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith took protesters to a St. Louis County mall, downtown St. Louis and a mass rally Saturday night in the Delmar Loop.

Protesters wait outside a news conference held by Gov. Eric Greitens on Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017. The region awaits a judge's ruling in the case of ex-officer Jason Stockley, who is charged with murder in the 2011 shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 8:15 p.m. Sept. 14 with Greitens' meeting — Though there’s no official word on when the Jason Stockley verdict will be announced in St. Louis, city and state leaders made it clear the time is soon.

A few hours after activating the National Guard, Gov. Eric Greitens met Thursday night with the fiancee of Anthony Lamar Smith, a black man who was fatally shot by Stockley, an white ex-St. Louis officer, in December 2011. Earlier in the day, Mayor Lyda Krewson issued a video in which she said the city is preparing to quell any disorder. And the city and county police departments said they’d start 12-hour shifts starting Friday morning.

Activists have promised days of protests if Stockley, who resigned in 2013 and now lives in Texas, is acquitted.

Panelists Redditt Hudson, left and Rick Frank, left, listen to former St. Louis police officer Bill Monroe at a forum about the search for a new chief on June 8, 2017.
Wiley Price | St. Louis American

The new chief of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department will have a lot to deal with upon taking over, both within the department and in regaining community trust.

A crowd of about 30 people outlined their concerns regarding the search process at a meeting Thursday night held by the Ethical Society of Police, which represents officers of color. They also made it clear what they wanted from the new chief.

Protesters outside St. Louis County headquarters on Feb. 2, 2015 call for reforms of the municipal court system.
File photo by Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

Following the police shooting death of Michael Brown in August 2014, there was a flurry of activity surrounding police and municipal court reform, as a well as public safety. Those efforts spilled over into 2015, which saw some changes come to St. Louis and St. Louis County.

On Tuesday’s “St. Louis on the Air,” we discussed the year’s biggest public safety, courts and police news with St. Louis Public Radio reporter Rachel Lippmann, who has been covering these issues for several years.

Dotson: St. Louis Police Officer Will Be Disciplined For Wearing 'Wilson' Patch

Dec 12, 2014
A St. Louis police officer will be disciplined for wearing a "Wilson" patch on his uniform, Chief Sam Dotson said Friday.
Rebecca Smith

A St. Louis police officer will face discipline for wearing a patch on his uniform seemingly in support of former Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson, during a downtown protest Friday.

An officer with the last name of Coats was seen wearing an arm patch that read "Wilson" during a protest against the grand jury decision not to indict Wilson for August's fatal shooting of Michael Brown.

Long-time St. Louis Alderwoman Phyllis Young announced Friday that she will be stepping down next week.

Young, a Democrat, has been the alderwoman for the 7th Ward for nearly 30 years, making her the longest serving alderman. Her ward encompasses parts of downtown and Soulard.

"After much soul searching and discussions with family and friends, I have decided that 29-plus years is enough," Young wrote to her colleagues.

Myers Family Attorney: Private Autopsy Disputes Police Account Of Shaw Shooting

Oct 23, 2014
Dr. Cyril Wecht marks the location of the likely fatal head shot as he presents his initial autopsy results on Vonderrit Myers, Jr.
Rebecca Smith/St. Louis Public Radio

The initial findings of a private autopsy on the body of Vonderrit Myers, Jr., released Thursday, show the 18-year-old was shot several times from behind. 

Myers was fatally shot by an off-duty St. Louis police officer on October 8th in the city's Shaw neighborhood, after police say Myers fired at the officer.

According to their attorneys, the family ordered the autopsy because they believe the police are giving inaccurate accounts of what happened. 

St. Louis Police Officers Association president Joe Steiger, business manager Jeff Roorda and attorney Brian Millikan comment on the lab tests that found gun residue on the hand of Vonderrit Myers during a press conference Tuesday.
Stephanie Lecci

Lab results show gunshot residue was found on the 18-year-old who was fatally shot by an off-duty St. Louis police officer in the Shaw neighborhood last week, according to new information released by the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department Tuesday.

The tests were conducted by the Missouri State Highway Patrol's crime lab. The results found gunshot residue on Vonderrit Myers, Jr.'s, hand, inner waistband, front and back jeans pockets and black t-shirt. The released statement also read: 

St. Louis Police Officer Receives Racist Letter

Sep 4, 2013
(St. Louis Public Radio)

St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson says he’s frustrated and disappointed after learning a black officer received a racist letter through interdepartmental mail.

Dotson has ordered internal and criminal investigations after learning about the letter last week.

(St. Louis Metropolitan Police Dept.)

Legislation being considered by the Missouri Senate would allow the Circuit Court for the city of St. Louis to create a special docket for armed offenders.

New St. Louis Police Headquarters To Cost More Than Expected

Mar 20, 2013
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

The move to a new building for the St. Louis Police Department is going to be more expensive than first thought.
 
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that bids came in more than $1.6 million over expectations. Now, the move will be delayed until early next year - nearly a year later than the original estimate.
 

St. Louis Public Radio

It was a crowded agenda for the five members of the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners today. Here's a recap of some of the main agenda items:

Crime

B0th police chief Sam Dotson and Mayor Francis Slay are downplaying a jump in the crime numbers in January.

The report released today shows total crime was up 23 percent last month compared to January 2012. There were 11 murders last January, and 15 this year.

Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

Updated at 12:45 Thursday, Feb. 7 with arrest numbers.

The St. Louis Police Department is deploying 80 extra officers and resources to north city’s College Hill neighborhood.

The area, which borders O’Fallon Park to the west and Interstate 70 to the north, has been the site of a number of shootings recently, including three murders.

St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson says the department is used to this kind of “hot-spot policing,” and says the tactic has been used to great effect in other parts of the city.

Adam Allington / St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis Police Department is planning free seminars for businesses and schools to receive training for an “active shooter” scenario.

St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson says the recent spate of high-profile tragedies across the country underscores the need for more training.

Shortly after taking over as chief Dotson met with the representatives from public and private schools to begin the process.

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