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The brother of Kirkwood City Hall shooter Charles "Cookie" Thornton is claiming that his Granite City scrap yard was raided Thursday afternoon in retaliation for the 2008 massacre.

Just hours before the fifth anniversary of the shooting was marked in Kirkwood, the Metro East Auto Theft Task Force executed a warrant at Paul Thornton's Scrap Solutions business in the 5500 block of Dial Drive. But Task force Director Gary Brewer says it had nothing to do with the anniversary of the shootings. "This all has to do with timing on following and executing a search warrant to find stolen vehicles," Brewer said.

Police found several stolen cars on the lot, along with a stolen semi and another tractor-trailer filled with auto parts. Brewer said the bust was the result of an investigation that began after a spike in thefts of older model cars.

Thornton was critical of the way the raid was conduction. He told Fox 2 News Thursday evening that it wasn't right for 20 to 30 officers to come to his business with guns drawn.

Police won't say if there are any charges pending against Thornton.
Published in Local News
Tonight is the fifth anniversary of the horrific Kirkwood City Hall shootings.

On February 7th, 2008, disgruntled Kirkwood resident Charles "Cookie" Thornton gunned down six public servants during a city council meeting before being shot and killed by police.

Two police officers, two council members and the city's public works director also died that night. Several months later, Kirkwood Mayor Mike Swoboda died from his injuries.

Thornton, a Meecham Park resident, had reportedly been upset because his company was denied the contract on a development in his neighborhood. Thornton had accused city leaders of bias in the racially divided city.

Since the shootings, several community groups have worked to try to bridge the divide.

There are no plans for a formal commemoration at tonight's city council meeting. Instead, Mayor Arthur McDonnell says they'll take a moment to remember the fallen at the end of the meeting.
Published in Local News

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