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   Homeownership in the St. Louis area remains among the highest in the nation, despite a recent decline.  

   Figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau today shows a homeownership rate of just over 70 percent from 2010 through 2012.  That's down almost two-percent from the prior three-year period.  But the current statistics put St. Louis second behind Minneapolis in the nation's 50 largest metro areas.  

   The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the numbers vary widely across the region, with more than 80 percent of homes in Jefferson and St. Charles counties being owner-occupied, compared with less than 45 percent in City of St. Louis. 

Thursday, 14 November 2013 02:40
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   Parents, local politicians and other are demanding to know why the Ferguson-Florissant School Board placed Superintendent Art McCoy on administrative leave.  

   About 1,500 gathered Wednesday night at McCluer North High School to demand answers from their school board.  Dozens spoke at the board meeting for more than three hours.  Some hurled allegations of racial motivations at the all white board.  McCoy is black.  

   Board President Paul Morris denies race was a factor.  He told the crowd that the issues revolved around McCoy's failure to comply with board directives.  Morris also told the crowd that he couldn't say more because privacy rules prevent him from being more specific in a personnel matter.  

   "This would be a whole lot easier if I could say what's going on," Morris told Fox 2 News, "but I can't."

   One parent told the board he planned to file a "Sunshine Law request" Thursday morning. 

   The board took no actions regarding McCoy's status at last night's meeting, but a decision on the superintendent's future is likely in the the next week or so.

 

Thursday, 14 November 2013 01:46
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   An off-duty St. Louis Police is recovering from a leg wound after being shot last night (Wednesday) at a home in the Walnut Park neighborhood. 

   The shooting happened just after 7:00 in the 5900 block of Lalite Avenue near Riverview Boulevard, according to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

   The officer had reportedly gone to his sister's home  to help resolve a dispute she was having with a man.  Police Chief Sam Dotson says the officer was escorting the man from the home, when the man's companion opened fire.  

   Dotson says the officer returned fire, but didn't believe he'd hit the suspect.  

   The area was cordoned off for several hours while police searched for the suspect, who is still at large.

   Chief Dotson says police know the identity of the suspect and he is a felon.   

 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 21:20
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Police have blocked off several streets surround a home in St. John.

Officers say a man has barricaded himself inside a home in the 3600 block of Marvin. The SWAT team is on site and they are attempting to negotiate with the man. Police are advising neighbors to stay inside their homes. 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 16:57
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EAST ALTON, Ill. (AP) - Property taxpayers in southern Illinois are getting back roughly $8.4 million related to a now-closed hospital under legislation signed by Gov. Pat Quinn.

The Chicago Democrat signed a bill Wednesday that refunds money from the Wood River Township Hospital that closed in 2000. The hospital's fund had about $8.4 million after paying pension benefits and debt.

House lawmakers approved the bill last week. Supporters say they had several options on what to do with the money. They say giving it to property taxpayers seemed the most fair and popular.

In a Wednesday statement, Quinn says it's been a priority to reduce costs and improve services.

The hospital board estimates a person with a $100,000 home would receive a refund of up to $450.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 16:34
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that only 751 Missouri residents selected a health insurance plan through a federally run online marketplace during the first month of its troubled launch.

HHS released the figures Wednesday. The department said the insurance exchange had about 14,100 completed applications from Missouri from Oct. 1 to Nov. 2. Those applications sought coverage for about 28,000 people.

The federal government did not say how many of the people selecting a health plan had started paying premiums.

Nationally, HHS says fewer than 27,000 people signed up for health insurance through the federal exchange.

The federal health care overhaul set up online marketplaces to help people find affordable insurance, but the rollout of the HHS website has been rocky from the start.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 16:15
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Police have released pictures of the suspect in a bank robbery Wednesday morning.

The man  robbed the US Bank inside the Butler Hill Schnucks around 11am. The robber handed the teller a note implying he had a weapon and demanding money.  He then left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash.  No one was injured in the incident.

Witnesses describe the suspect as a white male in his 30′s with a thin build and a scruffy beard.  He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and a black hat.

If you recognize the robber call Crimestoppers at 1-866-371-TIPS or the St. Louis County Police Department at 314-889-2341.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 15:40
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Ahead of a school board meeting Wednesday, students at a pair of Ferguson-Florissant Schools staged demonstrations in support of their superintendent.

Last week, superintendent Art McCoy was put on paid administrative leave for unspecified reasons. Fox 2 reports that today around 200 students at McCluer North High School jammed the hallways between classes in support of McCoy. At Cross Keys Middle School, 40 students protested in support.

A planned school board meeting Wednesday night has been move to the gym at McCluer North High School because a large crowd is expected. 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 14:18
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri teen who pleaded guilty to killing her 9-year-old neighbor wants the pleas to be vacated, corrected or set aside.

Alyssa Bustamante pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and armed criminal action for the October 2009 killing of Elizabeth Olten in St. Martins, just west of Jefferson City. Bustamante was 15 at the time.

Bustamante's attorney contends the teen's due process rights were violated and that she faced cruel and unusual punishment. The lawyer also asserts Bustamante's public defenders were not effective. A hearing was scheduled Friday in Jefferson City.

Bustamante was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole and ordered to serve a consecutive 30-year term for armed criminal action. Initially, she was charged with first-degree murder, which carries a sentence of life without parole.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 13:42
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Police say they will look into any new leads in the 2001 slaying of a newspaper sports editor after one of the men originally convicted had his case overturned and was freed.

The Columbia Police Department issued a written statement Wednesday saying it respects an appeals court decision that reversed the murder and robbery convictions of Ryan Ferguson in the killing of Columbia Daily Tribune sports editor Kent Heitholt.

The police department says it will follow up on any new information that is brought to its attention.

Ferguson was freed Tuesday evening after the Missouri attorney general decided not to re-try him.

Chuck Erickson remains in prison after pleading guilty to Heitholt's murder. Erickson originally testified against Ferguson but later recanted. Ferguson says neither one of them killed Heitholt.

 

Wednesday, 13 November 2013 12:41
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