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Government, Politics & Issues

Politically Speaking: St. Louis County’s Policing And Politics Are Under The Microscope

St. Louis County police Chief Jon Belmar on July 24, 2017.
File photo I Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio
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St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar is on the hot seat after a jury awarded Sgt. Keith Wildhaber nearly $20 million in a discrimination lawsuit.

On the latest episode of Politically Speaking, St. Louis Public Radio’s Julie O’Donoghue and Jason Rosenbaum take a closer look at some of the biggest political stories of the week.

Topping the headlines was turmoil in the St. Louis County Police Department after a jury awarded a nearly $20 million verdict to Sgt. Keith Wildhaber in his discrimination suit. That decision is prompting calls for sweeping change in one of Missouri’s largest local law enforcement agencies.

The Wildhaber verdict is also prompting introspection about county government’s relationship with the LGBTQ community. Wildhaber successfully argued he was denied promotions because he was gay — and faced retaliation when he lodged formal complaints. 

Here’s what was featured in this week’s show:

  • How impending appointments to the St. Louis County Board of Police Commissioners could affect Police Chief Jon Belmar’s future.
  • Why Missouri’s political community is paying close attention to the 99th District House contest between Democrat Trish Gunby and Republican Lee Ann Pittman. That race in western St. Louis County could foretell future political trends in St. Louis County, one of the few places in Missouri where Democrats have made definitive gains.
  • O’Donoghue and Rosenbaum talk with St. Louis Post-Dispatch reporter Joel Currier about his story examining St. Louis County Prosecutor Wesley Bell’s spending.
  • The potential ramifications of the Hyperloop — tube travel that could move people and goods at super-fast speeds.
Politically Speaking

The podcast is sponsored by the St. Louis-based law firm of Capes Sokol

Follow Julie O’Donoghue on Twitter: @jsodonoghue

Follow Jason Rosenbaum on Twitter: @jrosenbaum

Follow Joel Currier on Twitter: @joelcurrier

Music: “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah” by Donald Glover

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