JEFFERSON CITY — A Democratic group crucial to John Kerry’s presidential campaign has paid felons — some convicted of sex offenses, assault and burglary — to conduct door-to-door voter registration drives in at least three election swing states.
America Coming Together, contending that convicted criminals deserve a second chance in society, employs felons as voter canvassers in major metropolitan areas in Missouri, Florida, Ohio and perhaps other states.
By 12:45 p.m. on Wednesday, there was an hour wait for a cheeseburger at the Trailside Cafe in Rocheport. Bicyclists filled the booths inside and sat outside waiting for their lunches.
The population of Rocheport more than doubled as nearly 300 bicyclists passed through on the annual Katy Trail Ride sponsored by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and the Missouri State Park Foundation. Participants included families, fathers-and-sons, women and bicyclists of all experience levels.
Mental health care professionals from around the country have traveled to MU to learn how to treat children and families who have been exposed to trauma. But a group of professionals from Iraq is unable to attend the Summer Institute of Psychosocial Trauma.
The annual Summer Institute, hosted by MU’s International Center for Psychosocial Trauma, is in its 10th year of existence and is headed by Dr. Arshad Husain, professor and chief of child and adolescent psychiatry at MU.
In 1920, when V.T. Hamlin was an MU student for a semester, he sketched cartoons. A decade later, he created the comic strip “Alley Oop.” In the late 1980s, his cartoon art passed from the newspaper pages to a unique assembly of comic art at MU’s library.
The collection — tucked in the Special Collections Library on Ellis Library’s fourth floor — preserves a variety of culturally significant comics that show how comic art has been influenced by events of the day. Sometimes, it tells a story different than one you might find in history books.
Boone County Circuit Judge Gene Hamilton has appointed Cape Girardeau County prosecuting attorney H. Morley Swingle, 49, to prosecute any charges that may be filed against former Columbia police officer Steven Rios in connection with the June 5 death of Jesse Valencia.
Swingle is a 1980 graduate of MU’s School of Law. He was elected prosecuting attorney for Cape Girardeau County in 1987 and has served five terms.
Making it to the top of the waiting list for Section 8 vouchers is only part of the battle for families who need housing assistance. Once they get the vouchers, they have to find landlords who accept them.
That’s becoming increasingly difficult. The shortage of landlords who accept the vouchers and the deterioration of some neighborhoods with a high concentration of Section 8 residents can be attributed to bad landlords, bad tenants or both.
A Boone County judge appointed a special prosecutor Friday to handle any charges filed against former Columbia police officer Steven Rios, who had a personal relationship with slain MU student Jesse Valencia.
Boone County Prosecutor Kevin Crane said he asked for the appointment to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest, given Rios’ role as a police witness. “Mr. Rios was a witness in a number of past and pending cases filed by my office,” Crane said.
When an inmate enters the Boone County Jail, Medicare and Medicaid will not cover injury or illness, so resources to pay medical bills are limited.
Now, physicians who provide medical care for inmates will be paid by the county about 36 percent of the bill. The rate is equivalent to what Medicare or Medicaid would pay.
Boone County prosecutors have issued an arrest warrant for a second suspect in a Friday evening shooting on McBaine Avenue.
Columbia police requested a warrant Tuesday for Raymond D. Franklin, 17. Franklin was arrested earlier this month in connection with a shooting at Columbia Mall. Capt. Moon McCrary said there was no indication that the two shootings were connected.
Robert Totsch, director of sales at St. Louis’ KMOV-TV, said the city is a “Gettysburg” of political advertising. He said early estimates hint the St. Louis market could garner $35 million or more. He said that is up 5 percent from the 2000 election when St. Louis was the No. 1-market for political advertising in the United States, according to The Brennan Center for Justice.
Kansas City ranks No. 3 in the national market for political advertising, The Brennan Center for Justice reported, and the rest of the state is full of potential targets.
During the Twilight Festival on Thursday nights, political campaign headquarters move to downtown Columbia in an effort to reach out to as many voters as possible.
Outside the Democratic headquarters on Walnut Street, the College Democrats of MU pass out lollipops and stickers endorsing Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts. Just a few feet away, Lucia Bourgeois and Jennifer Good hand out bumper stickers that say, “My Child Is A Future Voter Against Bush.”
Former Columbia police officer Steven Rios attended a “social gathering” the night Jesse Valencia was killed, according to an affidavit used to search his home, and some of those in attendance were later questioned by a homicide detective.
What the document doesn’t say is that the gathering occurred on the roof of police headquarters at 600 E. Walnut St.
Columbia Police Department detectives told Boone County Prosecutor Kevin Crane nearly a week ago that a warrant for the arrest of former officer Steven Rios would be forwarded to the prosecutor's office.
Sonya Wright credits the Section 8 program with helping her children and herself lead a better life. With a housing voucher, she and her three children moved to Columbia three years ago from an apartment in Boonville. They live in a three-bedroom brick duplex on Bethany Street with Wright’s mother.
Wright said this choice helps her provide a better home for her family. Because the vouchers are transferable throughout the country, she was able to move her family to Columbia, where she said there are better opportunities for education and more activities for her children. If she had to live in public housing downtown, Wright said, she probably wouldn’t want to be in Columbia. She enjoys sitting on her front porch on a Sunday afternoon in peace and quiet.
It has been more than nine months since Connie Stephens helped unveil Missouri’s “Fight Terrorism” license plate, but she has yet to see it anywhere apart from her own garage.
Since Missouri introduced the personalized plate last year on the second anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, the demand has been low. Only 27 have been ordered, said Keith Bohl, bureau manager of the Driver and Vehicle Services Bureau of the Department of Revenue.
WASHINGTON — The Missouri River can operate without changes sought by environmentalists to save endangered fish and birds, a federal judge ruled Monday.
U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson ruled in favor of the Army Corps of Engineers on Monday on all counts. His 51-page order came nearly a year after a different federal judge ordered the changes and, when corps leaders refused to act, cited them for contempt.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday that America is on a solid path to prosperity, with new jobs being created and great strides being made in the war on terror.
But he warned during a campaign stop in Springfield that the country could be derailed from that path if President Bush does not win re-election in November.
It’s been seven years since the U.S. House of Representatives has seen such a serious, public ethical charge as the one recently filed against Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas. Among the allegations, DeLay is accused of taking money for political action and using federal agencies for political gain — all of which he has denied.
Now, Rep. Kenny Hulshof, a Republican from Missouri’s 9th District, will be among the 10 House members to decide what happens next. Hulshof sits on the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, or the ethics committee, which investigates all possible ethics violations by House members. The committee is evenly divided among Democrats and Republicans.
The CenterState Crossings development between Vandiver Drive and U.S. 63 will now include a four-story, 152-room hotel as well as another 45,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space.
The Columbia City Council voted unanimously Monday night to approve plans for a Hilton Garden Inn that will sit near Bass Pro Shops, though several members did express concern over the number of signs that will adorn the new hotel.
Police have arrested a suspect in a Friday evening shooting on McBaine Avenue.
Officers took Garrett Murray, 24, into custody early Saturday morning following a traffic stop on Vandiver Drive near Paris Road. He was charged on felony counts of armed criminal action and first-degree assault. He remained in Boone County Jail Monday with bond set at $100,000.