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 JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Republican state senator plans to hold hearings across Missouri to get public reaction to a new driver's license process that stores electronic copies of applicants' birth certificates and concealed gun permits in a state database.

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Kurt Schaefer claims the procedures by the Department of Revenue are an invasion of privacy. During a hearing Wednesday, Schaefer aggressively quizzed department officials about whether they are trying to comply with the 2005 Real ID Act, which sets stringent proof-of-identity requirements.

Department officials insisted they are not. They noted that a 2009 state law prohibits compliance with Real ID.

Schaefer wants to hold public hearings across the state on the procedure. He says he won't give the driver's license administration any money until it can prove it's worthy.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 12:33
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri House Budget Committee has advanced legislation to abolish a tax credit of up to $750 a year for low-income seniors and disabled people who live in rental housing.

More than 104,000 renters were awarded the credit last year. The proposal would redirect $57 million saved by trimming the tax credit to state health, mental health and social services that may benefit seniors and the disabled.

The budget panel accepted public testimony and approved the legislation Tuesday. Generally, House Republicans were supportive and Democrats were critical.

The measure was factored into the proposed budget approved by the House, and it has been backed by Gov. Jay Nixon.

The Senate passed the bill last month.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 12:26
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The trial continues tomorrow in the case of Trooper the pit bull who was dragged behind a truck for miles along Interstate 55. Investigators say 41-year-old Benetta Johnson allowed the pit bull to be tied to a trailer hitch before the dragging took place in November. Johnson told police that she was attempting to return the dog to her ex-husband, and that her 13-year-old son was supposed to place the dog in the bed of her ex-husband's truck. But instead, the ex unknowingly dragged the pup for several miles. Johnson is expected to testify in her own defense on Thursday. Meanwhile Trooper, who was re-named by the Humane Society, is making a remarkable recovery. 

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 12:16
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Mizzou guard Phil Pressey announced he's declaring for the NBA draft.

Missouri announced Wednesday that the junior point guard has decided to hire an agent and declare for the 2013 NBA Draft.

Players who declare have until April 16 to withdraw and retain their NCAA eligibility, but Pressey’s decision to hire an agent – Creative Artists Agency – effectively shuts the door on a return to Missouri.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 11:19
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The trial resumes tomorrow for an East St. Louis, Illinois woman accused of animal abuse.

A pit bull puppy was found tied to her her ex-husband's pickup truck and was dragged down a St. Louis interstate.

The case now goes to the defense on Thursday after prosecutors yesterday rested their case in the bench trial of 41-year-old Benetta Johnson.

Authorities believe Johnson tried to return the dog now dubbed Trooper to her ex-husband and, according to her statement to police, told her 13-year-old son last November to put the dog in the bed of her former spouse's pickup truck.

The teen instead tied the puppy to the truck's trailer hitch, and the driver didn't see the dog and began driving down Interstate 55.

The dog survived but underwent a series of operations.

 
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 11:12
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If your commute takes you near Hanley and Manchester Roads, you might want to try another way to get to your destination.

MSD crews are making emergency repairs to a major underground storm water sewer pipe that might have completely collapsed.

MSD says the 42-inch corrugated metal storm water sewer pipe runs under all lanes of Hanley Road. MSD says they first found out about it Tuesday when they got a report of a sinking roadway. 

Each of Hanley's outside lanes are closed to traffic south of Manchester. Some 40,000 motorists travel on Hanley every day. 

 

 
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 09:08
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It's day two in the trial of a 20-year-old man accused of killing an elderly Vietnamese man in the so-called "knockout game."

Prosecutors say Elex Murphy was one of four teenagers who randomly attacked 72-year-old Hoang Nguyen in April of 2011.

According to police, Nguyen was walking home from a grocery store with his wife in broad daylight near Spring and Chippewa, when then 18-year-old Murphy and the group of teens attacked the couple. Police say Murphy punched Nguyen in the head and then punched his wife in the eye. Nguyen later died at St. Louis University Hospital.

In the "knockout game" people are chosen at random and beaten, with the attacks often captured on cell phone video. 

Murphy wept silently in court yesterday as Nguyen's widow described the deadly attack.

 
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 08:07
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Fair St. Louis has announced their headline music acts. 

Kicking off the fair on Independence Day is Country Star Trace Adkins. Then on Friday is lead-singer of Poison Bret Michaels. Finishing off the fair on Saturday is The Counting Crows.

Performers for the Celebrate St. Louis Summer Concert series will be announced on May 1.

Admission to Fair St. Louis and Summer Concerts are free.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 07:51
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   Votes are still being counted in some metro-east elections.  

   Some of the race results are in:  Edwardsville has chosen a new mayor.  Hal Patton defeated Barb Stamer in that race.  Patton will replace Mayor Gary Niebur, who's led the city since 1992.  Mark Eckert will remain Mayor of Belleville, having beaten Jospeph Hayden and Phillip Elmore.  

   Other contests are still up in the air:  In Alton, Mayor Tom Hoechst could possibly lose his seat to write-in candidate Brant Walker but county Clerk Debra Ming-Mendoza said final numbers probably won't be available until Wednesday.  

   A property tax increase aimed at preventing the sort of cuts made in other districts has failed in O'Fallon.  Supporters had asked residents to approve a temporary tax to cover the gap until the state of Illinois paid its share of funding. The tax would have generated about $3 million dollars a year, but it was soundly defeated with 65-percent of voters saying no.

   Voter turn out was low, as expected, in most polling places in Tuesday's Consolidated Elections.  The Belleville News-Democrat reports that turnout ranged from 13 percent in East St. Louis, to 21 percent in Belleville.

   More results from Tuesday's Consolidated Elections in Illinois

 

 
Wednesday, 10 April 2013 02:31
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   An 87 year old woman is dead, two others people are in the hospital after a man fleeing police crashed into the car she was in.  

   St. Louis police say officers were trying to locate an 18 year old man who was wanted by another jurisdiction.  Officers found him in a car at Grand and Osage about 3:00 p.m.  Police say the man sped away when officers approached.  

   Witnesses told police that the man's car slammed into the other vehicle, and he took off on foot.  Police caught him a short time later.  

   The 87 year old woman and two other people in the car with her were taken to the hospital.  The woman later died. The other two victims are expected to survive.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 01:15
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