Mayor of Kansas City starts the pardoning process for pot offenses

KANSAS CITY — The mayor of Kansas City said his office will begin next week the process of pardoning misdemeanor marijuana offenses.

The Kansas City Star reports that Quinton Lucas made the announcement during his first State of the City address Wednesday. Lucas made the pardons part of his campaign for office in 2019. He said he’d like to go further and remove marijuana from the code of municipal ordinances.

Lucas said his office would post an application on its website next week so nonviolent offenders with misdemeanor marijuana or marijuana paraphernalia possession on their records can ask for pardons.

Police: Father storms onto a middle school bus with a pistol in Missouri

BERKELEY — A father who was upset that a student had been fighting with one of his children stormed onto a middle school bus with a loaded pistol in suburban St. Louis and threatened everyone onboard, authorities say.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Christian Goodson was charged Wednesday with two counts of unlawful use of a weapon and seven counts of endangering the welfare of a child, along with misdemeanor property damage and assault counts. His bond was set at $100,000 cash only. No attorney is listed for him in online court records.

Earlier in the day, a fight among students waiting at the bus stop continued when they boarded the bus, said Kevin Hampton, a spokesman for the Ferguson-Florissant School District.

Goodson became angry and used a pistol to break the glass on the school bus door when the driver wouldn’t let him onboard, Berkeley Police Officer Mike Wallish said in court papers. Fearing Goodson would start shooting, a district employee opened the door and let Goodson step onto the bus, Wallish said.

Goodson pushed the driver; said, “You got what you wanted”; and pointed the pistol at everyone on the bus, court records said. The students then ran to the back of the bus, and Goodson took his two children and left, police said.

The bus carried nine students, a new bus driver, a veteran driver who was mentoring the new one, and another staff member who was riding as a bus monitor because of previous disruptions and fights on the bus.

Berkeley Police Chief Art Jackson said officers arrested Goodson later at his home and recovered the loaded pistol. Jackson said officers also took other parents and students into custody but provided no details.

Tangie Francwar, principal of the Johnson-Wabash Sixth Grade Center, said in a letter to parents that the father was on the bus for 37 seconds and had encouraged students to fight, although the police summary doesn’t mention that. No one was hurt.

Couple accused of keeping autistic girl in cage in Missouri

KANSAS CITY — Two women have been charged with locking a 9-year-old autistic girl in a cage in their filthy and roach-infested northwestern Missouri home.

The girl’s mother, 35-year-old Katrina England, and her wife, 39-year-old Debra England, were charged Wednesday with child abuse and child endangerment. Court records don’t list attorneys for either of the women, who are free on bond and don’t have listed phone numbers.

DeKalb County sheriff’s deputies and state child welfare workers went to the family’s home in Maysville on Tuesday to investigate abuse allegations, the county sheriff’s office said in a news release. They found that a bunk bed in the home had been modified with boards to keep the girl from escaping and that it only had a sleeping bag inside for her to sleep on.

The couple admitted that they locked the girl in the cage for up to 12 hours at a time, the sheriff’s office said. Katrina England also admitted to leaving her daughter, who was from a prior relationship, inside the cage numerous times when she herself was out of the house, it said.

Chief Deputy Kasey Keesaman said the mother told investigators that they had been putting her daughter in the cage for several months, though he said authorities were still trying to determine exactly how long it had been going on.

“I would assume it had been happening for quite some time with this poor child,” Keesaman said.

The conditions in the home were deplorable, with no ceiling in the living room and floors that were covered in animal droppings and cigarette butts, the sheriff’s office said. Deputies saw cockroaches and reported that it was difficult to walk on the front porch because it was so piled with trash.

Keesaman said the girl has been going to school and that a bus dropped her off at the home during the investigation. She was taken into protective custody and is in good health, he said.

The women were arrested in 2018 in the nearby town of Cameron on suspicion of shoplifting, but the only previous police call involving their home was when the girl’s mother reported that her vehicle had been stolen, Keesaman said, noting that it turned out that the vehicle had been repossessed.

Man pleads guilty to having child porn on cellphone, which he lost

KANSAS CITY — A man who lost a cellphone containing child pornography at a truck stop pleaded guilty Thursday in the case.

Christopher Lee Caven, 39, of Belton admitted he used the phone to receive child pornography via Kik, prosecutors said. He pleaded guilty to receiving child pornography over the internet.

Caven’s phone was found at the Flying J Travel Plaza in Peculiar on March 5, 2017. The person who found it couldn’t locate the owner and tried to reset the phone for his own use. He called law enforcement after discovering a large amount of child pornography in the photo folder.

Investigators found 402 video files and 302 images of child pornography on Caven’s cell phone. Many of the images depicted children as young as toddlers.

Attorneys agreed to recommend a sentence between 15 and 18 years in federal prison without parole.

— The Associated Press

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