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The South Roxana, Illinois man who admitted to hitting and killing a motorcyclist two years ago, will head to prison.

Lloyd Denny told prosecutors he was talking on his phone and taking prescription medications when he rear ended the motorcycle and killed Bradley Umphlett in Alton. KSDK reports that just days before his sentencing, Denny's bond was revoked for possession of heroin.

Denny will spend three years behind bars.

Published in Local News

DALLAS (AP) - A hotel guest from Missouri has been found dead in the atrium lobby of the 30-story Hyatt Regency Dallas after apparently falling from an upper floor.

Dallas police say a hotel security guard early Wednesday discovered the body of 37-year-old Craig McKinnon Berry of Wentzville, Mo. A police report says a hotel employee heard a loud thud and contacted security.

A hotel spokesman says the guest apparently fell from one of the upper floors. The downtown Dallas hotel's interior atrium has 18 stories.

Police are investigating the incident as an unexplained death. Further details weren't immediately available.

 

Published in Local News

 A tragic accident claims the life of a well-liked teacher and coach in O'Fallon, Illinois.  

The Belleville News Democrat reports 33-year-old O'Fallon Township High School teacher Matt Seipp died Monday at St. Louis University Hospital after falling from a ladder on Sunday.

Seipp, who also owned Seipp Lawn Care LLC in O'Fallon, was well-known throughout the community.

The paper reports O'Fallon Police Chief John Betten says Seipp apparently died as a result of injuries after falling off a ladder Sunday. 

Betten said officers responded to a 911 call at 12:36 p.m. Sunday for a male victim with unknown injuries in the 800 block of Scott-Troy Road.

When officers and emergency workers arrived on scene, Betten said they determined the victim had fallen from a ladder while working in the garage and sustained injuries to his head. He was transported to Anderson Hospital in Maryville with the intent of meeting ARCH Air Medical Services there. Rainy weather prevented the crew from flying.

O'Fallon EMS proceeded to transport Seipp by ambulance to St. Louis University Hospital. A spokesman for the hospital declined to give Seipp's condition and referred questions to the family, which is standard policy when a death has occurred. Members of the immediate family could not be reached.

Seipp was a teacher in the industrial technology department at OTHS. He began his career at OTHS during the 2002-03 school year.

He also served as assistant baseball coach for the O'Fallon Panthers in 2003 and 2004.  Seipp is survived by his wife, Jodie, and infant son, Drew. Jodie Bell Seipp also works at OTHS as chair of the English Department.

Students, colleagues and friends of Seipp flooded Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites with tributes. 

Guidance counselors and social workers are available at O'Fallon Township High School for any student or employee needing assistance, according to Benway. Flags at all O'Fallon schools are being flown at half-staff in Seipp's memory, Benway said.

Funeral arrangements are pending at Schildknecht Funeral Home in O'Fallon.

 

Published in Local News

FESTUS, Mo. (AP) - One of the oldest residents of Missouri has died at age 110.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Ada "Irene" Cooper of Jefferson County died Saturday, according to an obituary from Vinyard Funeral Home in Festus.

The Post-Dispatch wrote a story in 2007 on Ada Cooper and her sister, Hazel Reeder. At the time, Mrs. Cooper was 105 and Ms. Reeder was 102. She died at age 104.

The sisters grew up on a farm in Ste. Genevieve County and attended a one-room schoolhouse.

Mrs. Cooper was married to her husband, Wendell, for 67 years before he died in 1992, at age 100.

Mrs. Cooper's funeral is at 1 p.m. Tuesday at Vinyard Funeral Home.

 

Published in Local News

 ROME (AP) - Giulio Andreotti, Italy's former seven-time premier and a symbol of post-war Italy, died Monday at his home in Rome, Italian officials said. He was 94.

   In announcing the death, Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno called Andreotti "the most representative politician" Italy had known in its recent history.

   At his prime, Andreotti was one of Italy's most powerful men: He helped draft the country's constitution after World War II, sat in parliament for 60 years and served as premier seven times. Until his death, he remained a senator-for-life.

   But the Christian Democrat who was friends with popes and cardinals was also a controversial figure who survived corruption scandals and allegations of aiding the Mafia.

   He was accused of exchanging a "kiss of honor" with the mob's longtime No. 1 boss and indicted in what was called "the trial of the century" in Palermo. He was eventually cleared.

   Andreotti was as known for his political acumen as for his subtle humor and witty allusions. With sharp eyes, thin lips and a stooped figure, he was immediately recognizable to generations of Italians. Friends and foes alike admired his intellectual agility and grasp of the issues.

   "Power wears out ... those who don't have it," he once famously said.

   Andreotti's rise in the Italian political scene mirrored the rise of Italy, which was then emerging from two decades of Fascist dictatorship under Benito Mussolini. He joined the conservative Christian Democrats, was part of the Constituent Assembly that wrote the constitution and was elected to parliament in 1948.

   He remained ever since.

   He held a series of Cabinet positions after the war, until he became premier for the first time in 1972. Twenty years later, he finished his last stint as premier.

   Although staunchly pro-American and a firm supporter of Italy's NATO membership, Andreotti was the first Christian Democrat to accept Communist support, even if indirect, in one of his governments. The Cabinet that was formed after big Communist gains in the 1976 general election needed the Communists and other leftists to abstain - rather than cast "no" votes - during parliamentary votes.

   By the early 1990s, a vast corruption drive led by prosecutors - the "Clean Hands" probe - swept through parliament and hobbled most existing political parties. Andreotti's Christian Democrats were among them, but the scandal did not touch him personally and he managed to stay on as premier until an election in 1992.

   Soon, however, an even more damaging accusation would befall Andreotti. In 1993, a Mafia informer told prosecutors that Andreotti had been involved in the 1979 slaying of journalist Mino Pecorelli, a muckraking journalist killed in a mob-style execution in Rome by four shots from a pistol with a silencer.

   Pecorelli's articles had often targeted Andreotti, along with a range of public figures. Andreotti was sometimes referred to in print as "The Godfather."

   The prosecution argued that the Mafia killed Pecorelli at the behest of Andreotti, who allegedly feared the reporter had dug up compromising information. Andreotti has always denied the charges, saying he was targeted by mobsters getting even for his crackdowns on organized crime.

   The lengthy case - dubbed by the Italian press "the trial of the century" - resulted in an acquittal in 1999; a shock conviction and sentence to 24 years in prison by an appeals court in November 2002; and, in the third and final judgment a year later, another acquittal.

   "Some might have hoped I wouldn't get here. But here I am, thanks to God," Andreotti, then 84, said at the time of the final ruling.

   In a separate case during the same years, Andreotti stood trial in Palermo on charges that he colluded with the Mafia. But he was cleared in that case too.

   Palermo prosecutors relied heavily on accounts by Mafia turncoats, including a mobster who testified that Andreotti had once exchanged a "kiss of honor" with Salvatore Riina, the "boss of all bosses" and a longtime fugitive who was captured in 1993. They alleged Andreotti granted favors for the mob in exchange for their delivering Sicilian votes for his party.

 

   Andreotti always denied the charges, again maintaining he was a victim of mobsters intent on taking revenge for his fight against the Mafia.

 

   Andreotti was born to schoolteachers in Rome on Jan. 14, 1919. He earned a law degree at Rome University and became a journalist after graduation.

   During World War II he worked as a librarian in the Vatican, and it was there that he met several politicians, including Alcide De Gasperi, who went on to become Italy's foremost postwar statesman.

 

   At age 35, Andreotti became Italy's youngest interior minister ever. It was the beginning of a career during which he navigated the Byzantine world of Italian politics like no other, accumulating power, honors and enemies along the way.

   Such was his reach that he was sometimes called "Divo Giulio" - a play on his name Giulio and the latin "Divus Iulius" (or Divine Julius), which was used for Julius Caesar. His critics called him Beelzebub for what they considered his diabolical skills.

   The one political prize he never achieved was to become president of the republic, a largely ceremonial but highly regarded office. He came closest in 1992, but his efforts failed amid the "Clean Hands" corruption scandals.

   A practicing Roman Catholic, Andreotti maintained solid ties to the Vatican throughout his political career. Emblematic of this stance was his Rome address, close to the centers of political power but also just across the Tiber from St. Peter's Square.

   He wrote numerous books, some of them best-sellers, wrote articles for Italian publications and edited the monthly Catholic magazine 30 Giorni. He was courted on TV shows for his deep knowledge of Italian and world affairs as well as for his humor. He even made a guest appearance as himself in the movie, "Il Tassinaro" ("The Taxi Driver") with fellow Roman and late comedian Alberto Sordi.

   A probing portrait of him in the film "Il Divo" was honored with the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival.

   Andreotti was married to Livia Danese. They had four children.

   AP writer Colleen Barry reported from Milan

   

Published in National News

How big a Cardinals fan are you? Enough to be buried with your team's logo?

That is exactly what one company is offering. Brand Memorials gives fans the chance to be buried in a casket with the birds on the bat. The company says urns are also available.

The price to be buried with your team? Urns start at $600 and caskets at $2,400.

 

Published in Local News

(ABC NEWS) Chris Kelly, one half of the '90s rap duo Kris Kross, has died of a possible drug overdose, Georgia authorities said.

Kelly, 34, was pronounced dead Wednesday night at the Atlanta Medical Center, Clint Harbin, an investigator with the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office, told ABC News Radio.

Authorities are investigating the circumstances surrounding his death and an autopsy is expected to be performed later today.

"It appears it may have been a possible drug overdose," said Cpl. Kay Lester, a spokeswoman for the Fulton County police, according to The Associated Press.

Kelly (known as "Mac Daddy"), along with Chris "Daddy Mac" Smith, the backward-pants-wearing mini-rappers, rose to fame with their song "Jump" from their 1992 album, "Totally Krossed Out."

"Jump" hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and remained there for eight weeks.

Kelly and Smith were discovered by music producer and rapper Jermaine Dupri in an Atlanta mall. Kelly was 13 when "Totally Krossed Out" was released. The album went on to multiplatinum status thanks to "Jump," which remained a popular song throughout 1992.

They toured with Michael Jackson later that year during his "Dangerous World Tour."

Their gimmick of wearing clothes backward won over legions of fans and allowed the duo to cross over into mainstream success. They even went on to release their own video game titled "Kris Kross: Make My Video" for the Sega CD console.

They released "Da Bomb" in 1993, which failed to match the success of their prior album. One of the singles off the album, also titled "Da Bomb," featured female rapper Da Brat.

The group's last album, "Young, Rich & Dangerous," was released in 1996 and reached gold status.

Earlier this year, the group performed together in Atlanta to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Dupri's label, So So Def.

"He actually was still working on music and recording," said Yahoo music writer Billy Johnson Jr., who interviewed Kelly in February.

"He said he had several hundred songs that he had recorded and he had mentioned that during his time away from releasing music that he had actually gone back to school to learn how to be a studio engineer," Johnson said, according to ABC News Radio.

Johnson also discussed questions about Kelly's health after pictures surfaced online with patches of his hair missing.

"I asked him about that and he said he had skin disease called alopecia and he said that those rumors had been very hurtful because people thought he had cancer and it wasn't true," Johnson said.

Rapper LL Cool J tweeted a link to his new song, "Jump on It," and dedicated it to Kelly.

"R.I.P Chris Kelly. This song is now officially dedicated to you. May GOD embrace your soul & lift up your family," he tweeted."

Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and Da Brat also both tweeted condolences overnight.

ABC News' Jason Nathanson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Published in National News
Illinois State Police confirm 5 people were shot to death in a home in the tiny central Illinois community of Manchester. A 6-year-old girl is being treated for injuries at a Springfield, Illinois hospital along with the suspect. Illinois State Police have also confirmed the suspect is dead. 
 
The names of the victims aren't available. The Illinois State Police will meet with reporters at 10:30 this morning. 
 
The suspect was on the run since the 4:30am shootings inside a public housing complex on East Street on Wednesday. He was caught after a high-speed pursuit. Shots were fired while the suspect was taken into custody.
 
School superintendents at several area districts cancelled classes today as a precautionary measure while the suspect was still on the loose.  They include  Jacksonville District 117, Salem Lutheran Academy, Four Rivers Special Education District, Westfair Academy, North Greene District, and Winchester Schools closed as a safety precaution.
 
Manchester, IL is about 70 miles north of St. Louis, 50 miles west of Springfield.
    
Published in Local News

A St. Charles County man faces over three decades in prison for allegedly causing an accident that took the life of an unborn baby.

Prosecutors say Paul Murphy was under the influence of benzodiazepine--an anxiety and insomnia medication--when he hit the car carrying a pregnant woman on March 16. The woman was 19 weeks pregnant when the accident happened and she gave birth to a still born baby.

If convicted on all three counts of assault he faces, Murphy could spend 36 years behind bars.

 

Published in Local News

Ameren has set up a memorial fund for one of their line workers who died last week. Dave Burns was electrocuted while performing repairs in the wake of the Hazelwood tornado.

Donations can be sent to the following fund:

In Memory of Dave Burns Fund 

Vantage Credit Union 

P.O. Box 4433 

Bridgeton, Mo. 63044

 

Sympathy cards and/or letters of condolence can be sent to:

Baue Funeral Home 

Attn: Ryan Burns 

3950 W. Clay St. 

St. Charles, Mo. 63301

 
Published in Local News

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