Officials in the City of St. Louis are putting impaired drivers on notice.
Beginning Monday, St. Louis is a "No Refusal Zone." That means that police will automatically seek a search warrant allowing blood-alcohol tests for suspected drunk drivers who refuse to take a breath test.
Susan Ryan, a spokesperson for the circuit attorney's office said in a statement that "too many impaired drivers have learned how to game the legal system by refusing to submit to field sobriety tests." Ryan says In St. Louis, the refusal rate is over 50 percent.
Ryan says the ultimate goal of the initiative is to reduce the number of DWI fatalities and injuries.
CHICAGO (AP) — Drivers in St. Louis southern Illinois suburbs will soon see their top speed limit increased to 70 miles per hour.
The Illinois Department of Transportation says about 87 percent of interstate highways and 98 percent of rural interstates under its jurisdiction will be increased to 70 under the new law taking effect January 1st.
IDOT officials say crews will start installing 70 mph signs and removing 65 mph signs in early January.
Transportation officials urge motorists to obey posted speed limits. They say the 70 mile per hour speed limit will be in effect on segments of Illinois interstates that can accommodate the higher speed while maintaining safety.
About 28 percent of the Illinois Tollway's 286-mile system will be increased to 70 miles per hour.
ST. CLAIR, Mo. (AP) — A Franklin County judge has ordered animals seized from a home to be returned to the owner.
The animals — 192 rabbits, 25 goats, 10 cats, 21 chickens, four dogs and a duck — were removed from 75-year-old Velma Muessemeyer's property near St. Clair, Mo., on Nov. 12. It was the second animal seizure there in less than four years.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that so far, the animals have not been returned.
Humane Society officials said at the time of the seizure that the animals lived in dirty and dangerous conditions. Muessemeyer was charged with 21 misdemeanor animal abuse counts.
Franklin County Associate Circuit Judge David Tobben said in a ruling last week that there was no evidence that most of the animals were in danger.
PLATTE WOODS, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri Lottery says a Powerball ticket worth $71.5 million was sold at a Kansas City-area convenience store.
Lottery officials said Friday a ticket sold at the Autobahn BP store in Platte Woods matched all six numbers drawn Christmas night. The store will get a $50,000 bonus for selling the prize. And the winner can either collect the full jackpot in 30 annuity payments, or take the one-lump payment of $39.8 million before taxes.
Lottery spokeswoman Susan Goedde says the winner will be announced in the next few days through a news release or news conference.
The winning numbers are 23, 28, 38, 39, 56 and the Powerball number is 32.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Supreme Court has refused to hear an appeal by a Guatemalan woman seeking to overturn the adoption of her biological child by a Carthage couple. Encarnacion Romero sought to challenge a Missouri Court of Appeals decision terminating her parental rights to the child who was adopted by Seth and Melinda Moser. The Mosers have raised the child, who is now 7, since he was 1 year old. Legal battles have gone on since 2008.