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Man found guilty in shooting of police officer

Thursday, 27 March 2014 10:46 Published in Local News
BELLEVILLE, Ill. (AP) - A convicted killer faces a May sentencing date after being found guilty of shooting a police officer in the face while the officer was trying to arrest him.
 
St. Clair County jurors deliberated an hour before convicting 38-year-old Cortez Gillum of two counts of attempted first-degree murder. Gillum also was found guilty of aggravated battery with a firearm and unlawfully possessing a weapon as a felon.
 
Prosecutors say that Gillum was wanted on a federal warrant in March 2012 because he'd violated parole after being released to a halfway house.
 
When police officer Michael Baxton Jr. spotted Gillum outside a public housing complex and tried to arrest him, the two struggled. Gillum shot Baxton, who survived. Gillum's previous convictions include one for second-degree murder.
   
 

Parental rights battle heats up in Missouri

Thursday, 27 March 2014 09:10 Published in Local News
 JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - Lawyers for a Guatemalan woman seeking to overturn her biological son's adoption by a southwest Missouri couple have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.
 
The Joplin Globe reports attorneys for Encarnacion Romero filed the request Monday. The Missouri Supreme Court has refused to hear the woman's challenge to a state appeals court ruling terminating her parental rights to the boy, who is now 7.
 
Joplin lawyer Bill Fleischaker, one of the biological mother's attorneys, says the appeal would assert in part that the ruling relied on the mother's immigration status in determining if the adoption should be allowed.
 
A lawyer for the adoptive parents says those issues had been argued in earlier proceedings. The adoptive parents have been caring for the boy for about six years.

Kids help kids handle tornado crisis

Thursday, 27 March 2014 08:22 Published in Local News
JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - Students from the southwest Missouri district where nine schools were destroyed or damaged in a May 2011 tornado are headed to Moore, Okla., to help children who lost their school to a tornado last year.
 
Eleven fifth-graders from Stapleton Elementary School in Joplin will travel 225 miles by bus Friday to the Oklahoma community. They'll bring 300 books and $1,000 in pennies raised to help children at Plaza Towers Elementary, which was destroyed in a May 2013 tornado.
 
Nearly 7,000 homes were destroyed and 161 people were killed in the EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin on May 22, 2011. In Moore, an EF-5 tornado killed five people and destroyed 1,100 homes on May 20, 2013.
   
 

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