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Mo. National Guard members disciplined for Joplin looting, exempt from Sunshine Law

(UPI/Rick Meyer)
Mercy Hospital in Joplin, Mo. pictured here on May 23, 2011, following a devastating tornado that ripped through the town.

Missouri National Guard members have been disciplined for looting in Joplin after the massive tornado.

But the guard has refused to release information about the incidents, saying it's not subject to Missouri's open records law.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports the guard didn't respond to requests for details about the looting by citing an exemption to the Missouri Sunshine Law.

Brig. Gen. Randy Alewel, commander of the 35th Engineer Brigade, acknowledges that members of his unit were involved in looting after the tornado last year. Alewel wouldn't say how many soldiers were involved or how they were disciplined.

Guard spokeswoman Maj. Tammy Spicer says the guard is exempt from the Missouri open records law and provides the maximum amount of information allowed under the laws the guard follows.


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