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UPDATE: The City of St. Louis plans to appear a circuit court judge's ruling that invalidates the city's red light camera program.

 

Tuesday's ruling bars the city from processing payments for tickets and sending out violation notices. The city says they responded to and fixed problems in the red light camera program that were cited in a 2013 ruling. City Counselor Michael Garvin says they are going to ask the state Supreme Court to settle the matter.

 

Police Chief Sam Dotson says the cameras have reduced red light running--he says some of the first intersections to have the cameras installed have seen citations drop by 80 percent. 

 

EARLIERA judge in St. Louis says red light camera tickets are unenforceable.  A ruling Tuesday by St. Louis Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer nullifies the city's red light camera ordinance and bars the city from enforcing any part of it.  That includes processing payments for tickets and sending out violation notices or collection letters.  

 

The ruling stems from a petition by two women who'd received red light camera tickets.  Their attorney had argued that the law had already been voided by four other court rulings.  The judge agreed.

 

Proponents of the law had argued that the women lacked standing because their tickets had already been dismissed.  Judge Ohmer called this case an exception because of the  "general public interest."  He also wrote that it was obvious that the tickets had been dismissed in an attempt to avoid a ruling on the ordinance.

 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 01:12
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   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has endorsed legislation that seeks to send federal agents to jail for enforcing gun control laws.
   The Republican-led Senate gave first-round approval to the measure late Tuesday. It would declare federal gun controls laws that infringe on gun rights to be null and void. Federal agents enforcing those laws could be prosecuted and punished by up to one year in jail.
   However, the measure would likely face a court challenge if approved. And courts have consistently ruled that states cannot nullify federal laws.
   Republican Sen. Brian Nieves is sponsoring the bill. He says it protects liberties, but opponents say it would lead to more violence.
   The bill, which needs one more vote before moving to the House, would also allow designated school personnel to carry concealed weapons in schools.
 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 01:00
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri House members have given first-round approval to legislation taking aim at synthetic drugs.
 
The bill would add several specific substances to what is considered synthetic marijuana.
 
It was endorsed by a voice vote Tuesday and needs a second vote before moving to the Senate.
 
In recent years, Missouri has tried to keep pace with evolving synthetic drugs and twice has approved legislation targeting them. Sponsoring House member Shawn Rhoads says the current bill is needed to stay ahead in the effort.
 
Lawmakers in 2010 barred spice cannabinoids sold as incense known as K2. A year later, the definition of marijuana in state drug laws was expanded to cover synthetics. The 2011 measure also barred substances marketed as incense or "bath salts" that mimic the effects of cocaine and marijuana.
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:30
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As the city of St. Louis celebrates turning 250 years old, event organizers are hoping for a world record.

 

STL250 is organizing a Burnin' Love Festival for Friday. The group wants to invite 250 couples to get either engaged of re-engaged on Art Hill on Valentine's Day. Couples can register to take part at the stl250 website. If chosen, they could win prizes ranging from a steak dinner to a diamond engagement ring.

 

The festival takes place at Art Hill in Forest Park, starting at 4:30 p.m. The "lovin' moment ceremony" will occur at 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:26
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A California man who served as a youth minister in Florissant, is facing sex abuse charges.
 
Brandon Milburn is accused of sodomizing two 11-year-old boys in his church--the First Christian Church on Patterson Road. Investigators believe the crimes took place sometime between 2007 and 2009. Police are now asking any other potential victims to come forward.
 
California officers are trying to determine if there are any victims in that state.
 
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:20
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A 21-year-old man is facing charges for allegedly killing his roommate, who was a convicted sex-offender.

 

The St. Clair County State's Attorney announced the charges today. Police say that Mohammed Abuharba shot William Harriel Jr on February 6 and left him in the road to die. Investigators say that Harriel's status as a sex offender does not appear to be part of the motive. 

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:19
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Supporters of a higher wages are urging Missouri lawmakers to let voters decide whether to increase the state's minimum wage to $10 an hour.
 
Missouri's minimum wage currently is $7.50 an hour - 25 cents higher than the federal minimum wage.
 
Several low-income workers testified Tuesday before a Missouri Senate committee in support of a proposed ballot measure increasing the minimum wage. The workers said they often must skip meals because they don't earn enough to pay all the bills for food, housing, utilities and transportation.
 
A Webster University economist said a minimum wage increase would help the economy, because workers likely would spend the additional money.
 
Lobbyists for several business groups testified against the measure, citing concerns that it could squeeze low-skill workers out of jobs.
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 15:41
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CHICAGO (AP) - A federal lawsuit against Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford details an ex-employee's sexual harassment allegations, but government watchdog groups say the lawsuit's political corruption claims are just as worrisome.
 
Rutherford is in a four-way Republican gubernatorial primary. He says the allegations are false and politically motivated. He spent Tuesday refuting the claims and questioning the lawsuit's timing.
 
The allegations include forcing employees to do campaign work on state time, which is prohibited.
 
Common Cause Illinois officials say the claims raise questions about Rutherford's leadership. An Illinois Campaign for Political Reform spokeswoman says voters are already corruption weary with two previous governors sent to prison
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 15:37
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Students in an Edwardsville School District will be in classrooms on two holidays in March.

 

Parents in District 7 voted to make up snow days on Casimir Pulaksi day, on March 3rd, and a Teacher Institute Day on March 21st.

 

The district considered canceling holidays or spring break, but parents voted for the two days in March.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 15:34
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri House members have endorsed the creation of a government database to track people's prescription drug purchases.
 
Lawmakers for years have debated the idea, and Missouri now is the only state without legislation to create the database.
 
Sponsoring House member Kevin Engler says setting up a database can help prevent overdose deaths. One opponent voiced concerns about the potential for data breaches and government overreach.
 
Under the proposal, pharmacies would submit the identity of patients receiving medicine as well as the drug's quantity, the date and other details. Data could be given to doctors and law officers who have subpoenas.
 
House members endorsed the legislation by voice vote Tuesday. It needs a second affirmative vote before moving to the state Senate.
 
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 15:25
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