The top officers of the St. Louis Police Officers' Association are challenging a potential 2012 ballot measure granting St. Louis and Kansas City local control of their police department. The lawsuit filed Thursday in Cole County contends the summary and financial estimate that would appear on the statewide ballot are unfair and misleading.
According to the Associated Press, an Arizona judge Monday ordered Jared Lee Loughner, the suspect in the January shooting rampage in Tucson, to undergo a mental evaluation at a Missouri facility. The exam will be conducted at the federal Bureau of Prisons facility in Springfield no later than April 29. The 22 year-old Loughner has pleaded not guilty to charges stemming from the January 8 shooting that killed six people and wounded 13, including Representative Gabrielle Giffords. The judged ordered the scope of the exam to be limited to whether Loughner is competent to stand trial, not whether he was sane at the time of the shooting. Defense lawyers have not said if they intend to present an insanity defense.
The chairwoman of the Missouri Conservation Commission says she is running for lieutenant governor in 2012. Becky Plattner announced her candidacy yesterday in Marshall, where she previously was the Saline County presiding commissioner. Plattner also campaigned to be the state's No. 2 executive in 2008, losing in the Democratic primary. The office may be open in 2012, because Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder is expected to run for governor. The Marshall Democrat-News reports that Plattner cited her two terms in county government as providing her the experience to be lieutenant governor. She said she also has knowledge and experience in promoting agriculture, tourism, senior services and veterans' issues. Missouri House Speaker Steven Tilley, a Republican from Perryville, also is considering a run for lieutenant governor.
A St. Louis police officer has been implicated in taking and releasing a photo of a suspect killed in a shoot-out with law enforcement officials. Carlos Boles shot and killed a federal marshal, injured another marshal and a St. Louis police officer as they attempted to take him into custody on a warrant earlier this month. The officers returned fire and killed Boles. St. Louis Police said in a statement yesterday that a distasteful photo that was released of Boles' body came from an officer who was part of the SWAT team. Chief Dan Isom has ordered the officer off the SWAT team. The discipline the officer will face will be determined at the conclusion of an internal affairs investigation. The department has not released the officer's name.
St. Louis police chief Dan Isom is apologizing for a leaked photo from a south St. Louis crime scene that shows the body of 35-year-old Carlos Boles.
"It's completely inappropriate for that to have occurred," Isom said after today's meeting of the Board of Police Commissioners. "And we apologize certainly in advance if it's anything that our officers have done. As soon as we learned about it, we started an internal investigation."
After some budget restructuring by chief Dan Isom, the St. Louis Police Department will not have to lay off any police officers, the City of St. Louis announced today via a press release from the mayor's office.
A deputy U.S. marshal shot in the head while trying to arrest a fugitive early Tuesday morning has died. The U.S. Marshals Service in Washington, D.C. says 48-year-old John Perry died at 7 p.m. Tuesday night at Saint Louis University Hospital. He had been with the U.S. Marshals for almost 10 years. Authorities say the suspect, Carlos Boles, shot Perry and a second U.S. marshal and a St. Louis police officer as they were trying to arrest Boles on charges of assaulting a law enforcement officer and drug possession. Boles was killed in the exchange. U.S. deputy marshal Theodore Abegg was shot in the ankle and as of last night was listed in fair condition at SLU. The St. Louis police officer was hit in his protective vest and received a grazing wound to the face. He was treated at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and released.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn reportedly plans to sign a bill to abolish the death penalty in the state. The two sponsors of the bill say Quinn's staff told them he intends to sign it at a ceremony today. State Rep. Karen Yarbrough and state Sen. Kwame Raoul told The Associated Press on Tuesday that they have been invited to the bill signing in Quinn's Springfield office. Quinn's office declined to comment about his intentions. The new law would take effect July 1. Former Gov. George Ryan imposed a moratorium on executions in Illinois in 2000 after the death sentences of 13 men were overturned. Ryan cleared death row before leaving office in 2003.
A former St. Louis alderman who was recalled from office in 2005 over his support for controversial development projects in his south city ward seems poised to take his old seat back in April. Tom Bauer defeated the current 24th Ward incumbent, Bill Waterhouse. Bauer will face an independent candidate in April. The three other incumbents facing primary challenges all won. In the south side’s 20th ward, Alderman Craig Schmid beat Shannon McGinn. Sixth Ward Alderman Kacie Starr Triplett beat out criminal defense attorney Brad Kessler to continue representing Lafayette Square and Downtown West. And in the St. Louis Hills’ Ward 15, incumbent Donna Baringer beat out former Circuit Clerk Mariano Favazza. As expected, voter turnout was low with less than 7 percent of the city’s registered voters casting a ballot.
Two U.S. marshals and one St. Louis police officer were shot while attempting to make an arrest in the 3100 block of Osage in south St. Louis City. St. Louis police have confirmed that the suspect has died following a stand-off that began shortly before 7 a.m. The 2 marshals were taken to St. Louis University hospital where one is in critical condition and one is in fair condition, according to a hospital spokesperson. The St. Louis police officer was hit in the vest and suffered a graze wound.
A day after a measure granting St. Louis control of its police department cleared the latest of several legislative hurdles, a broad coalition of politicians, business and community leaders and civil rights activists pledged to help it get through the Missouri Senate.
The message they'll bring? You have to listen to the people.
The Missouri House has given first-round approval to legislation that would return control of the St. Louis Police Department to the city. The department has been under state control since the Civil War. Last year, the bill fell 12 votes short of first-round approval, but this year it passed overwhelmingly, with more than 75 percent of lawmakers voting yes. Supporters added a new argument this year: that it doesn't make sense to subsidize the St. Louis Police Department while having to cut the state budget in other areas.
University of Missouri Curators have scheduled a virtual meeting this morning to discuss a likely tuition increase at the four-campus system. The video teleconference comes in advance of a late January meeting in Columbia where the curators are expected to approve the system's first tuition increase in three years. School officials have said they hope to keep the increase below 10 percent. Tuition for the coming academic year is typically set in the spring. But university leaders want an early start because Missouri law requires a waiver from the state to raise tuition beyond the Consumer Price Index inflation rate. Students who live in Missouri and take a standard 15 credit course load pay $3,684 in tuition each semester. A 9 percent increase would translate into a $332 boost per semester.
St. Louis police are investigating the accidental shooting of a three-year-old boy. Police say the toddler was critically wounded when he accidentally shot himself in the head. St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports the boy underwent surgery Thursday afternoon at St. Louis Children's Hospital. Police believe the boy was with his mother and an infant sibling at their north St. Louis home when he somehow got his hands on a loaded gun. They say he accidentally shot himself and was found lying on a bed. The mother ran to get the father at the neighbor's house and they raced the toddler to the hospital, flagging down paramedics on the way. The toddler remains in critical condition.
The Belleville News Democrat is reporting that lawyers for Christopher Coleman are asking for a delay in the February 15 trial to allow Illinois Governor Pat Quinn to make a decision on a bill that would abolish the death penalty in the state. Coleman is accused of killing his wife and sons in their Columbia, Ill. home in May 2009. He faces a possible death sentence if convicted.
St. Louis police are investigating after a You Tube video surfaced showing a city officer beating a man with his nightstick. The officer is on administrative duty pending the completion of the department's investigation. The video was shot at a convenience store, through an uninvolved vehicle's window. The convenience store owner says the off-duty officer was working security when a young man came in and caused a disturbance. He says the video doesn't show the man grabbing at the officer's ankles and that he believes the officer did nothing wrong. You Tube removed the video Tuesday afternoon.
Illinois legislators will begin the process to redraw the state's political lines in the spring. On Tuesday, lawmakers passed changes to the redistricting process, making public input mandatory. If the governor signs the measure, four public hearing will be required by law. There, voters can tell legislators what they want the map to look like before one is drafted. However, critics say the hearing should also be mandatory after a proposed new legislative map is released. Woodstock Democratic Representative Jack Franks says the reforms aren't a panacea to the politically charged process. The changes will also provide increased protections for monitories, ensuring that districts are drawn so minority voters aren't split into too many districts.
The U.S. Army's chief of staff is pledging to get financial help from Congress for soldiers and families affected by last week's tornado at Missouri Fort Leonard Wood. General George Casey Jr. toured the sprawling southern Missouri post on Tuesday, four days after an EF-3tornado destroyed about 30 homes and left more than 60 others needing repairs. Thousands of people were off the post when the tornado struck on New Year's Eve. Casey noted that only a few people were injured. He said most people at the post had a 15-minute warning through sirens and a public address system. He also praised the support from neighboring communities that have donated thousands of items of food, clothing, toys and bedding.
According to the Associated Press, police said in a statement Tuesday that while the circumstances are not yet known, the video is disturbing. Police say they have not yet identified the officer, but he will be placed on administrative duty once identified, until the investigation is complete.
Every day, train cars and semi trucks leave St. Louis stacked high with pallets of bricks. They head south to cities like New Orleans, to be reused in new construction.
But those bricks leave at a cost to the city—they’re often stolen from buildings the city owns, damaging both the government’s investment and city’s historic heritage. Mandi Rice takes us to one of those neighborhoods, and asks what the city government is doing to curb the problem.
UPDATED 4:10 Dec. 15, 2010 with comments from Richard Callahan and sentencing:
In court on Wednesday, prosecutors revealed that Shade stopped cooperating last January. They found out about it as they were preparing to take Gregory P. Shepard, the manager at St. Louis Metropolitan Towing, to trial. It was Shade's testimony that helped indict and convict Shepard.