Metro-east authorities aren't sure how a woman found slumped over the wheel of a rental van in a store parking lot actually died.
The Madison County Coroner's Office has identified the victim as 42 year old Frances M. Ragan of East Alton. The coroner's officer reportst that an initial autopsy found no signs of violence or trauma. Further testing, including toxicology tests, will be performed.
An employee of the Dollar General store in the 400 block of Broadway in South Roxana had discovered the woman Saturday morning and called police.
Investigators are asking anyone who spoke to Frances Ragan over the past several days to contact them.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Hundreds of people who have developmental disabilities could begin receiving publicly funded services as Missouri officials tackle a waiting list for in-home services that now stands at almost 1,400 people.
Governor Jay Nixon is proposing nearly $24 million for in-home services for people who qualify for Medicaid that officials say would cover 970 people. The Department of Mental Health says about 500 people would remain on the waiting list that several years ago stood at more than 2,000 people.
Other states also have waiting lists for the services. The waits can lead to financial challenges and psychological strain.
ARNOLD, Mo. (AP) — An eastern Missouri community that was the first in the state to install red light cameras says it will keep issuing tickets to red-light runners caught on camera, but they don't have to pay the fine if they don't want to.
TheSt. Louis Post-Dispatch reports the Arnold City Council voted unanimously Thursday to not pursue tickets from the cameras. The decision comes after the Missouri Court of Appeals Eastern District ruled in December that Arnold's red-light camera law is unconstitutional.
City Administrator Bryan Richison says those who get tickets and come to court will get their ticket dismissed, while no warrants will be issued for those who just ignore the tickets. Those who pay the fines, however, won't get their money back.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has joined his Missouri counterpart and others at a ribbon-cutting for a new bridge over the Mississippi at St. Louis.
The Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge is opening to traffic Sunday.
The two states spent years fighting over how to pay for the $700 million span, then argued over what to name the bridge.
But on Saturday officials from both states came together to celebrate its completion.
Quinn said the first new link to be built between downtown St. Louis and southwestern Illinois in more than four decades will be a "catalyst for business development and job creation."
U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx called it "a road to opportunity."
It's designed to relieve I-70 traffic on the chronically crammed 50-year-old Poplar Street Bridge.
WASHINGTON (AP) — In an assertion of same-sex marriage rights, Attorney General Eric Holder is applying a landmark Supreme Court ruling to the Justice Department.
The attorney general says same-sex spouses cannot be compelled to testify against each other, should be eligible to file for bankruptcy jointly and are entitled to the same rights and privileges as federal inmates in opposite-sex marriages.
The attorney general says that in every federal courthouse and in every proceeding where Justice Department employees stand, they will ensure that same-sex marriages receive the same privileges, protections and rights as opposite-sex marriages under federal law.
On Monday, the Justice Department will issue a policy memo to its employees instructing them to give lawful same-sex marriages full and equal recognition, to the greatest extent possible under the law.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Two lung cancer patients in St. Louis are the first anywhere to get radiation therapy in a new machine that provides real-time clear imaging of their tumors.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the ViewRay machine was developed by a Washington University doctoral graduate, Jim Dempsey. He brought his invention back to Washington University in 2011 for a clinical trial, though the university holds no patents or financial interests in it.
The machine was recently used on two patients at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. It allows the magnetic resonance imaging and radiation to be produced at the same time, giving doctors a look at the tumor as they deliver the radiation beams, potentially helping them better target the cancerous cells.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri lawmakers are considering an overhaul of the state's criminal laws this year that would include the creation of new felony and misdemeanor classes.
But within the 1,100-page bill is a more substantive change in the state's drug policy.
The Senate measure, endorsed by a committee this week, would reduce the penalties for first-time marijuana possession offenders. Instead of facing a year in jail and a $1,000 fine, offenders would only be subject to a maximum $500 fine. The bill would also reduce the maximum prison sentence for other drug possession charges.
Similar House legislation, however, would leave the penalties the same as current law. Its sponsor says the criminal code overhaul should be separate from changing Missouri's drug policy.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A Springfield man has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing his roommate so he could steal his heroin.
The Springfield News-Leader reports 40-year-old Jarrod Sirois was found guilty in December of first-degree murder in the beating death of 45-year-old Robert Pugh.
Judge Calvin Holden sentenced Sirois on Friday after denying his motion for a new trial.
Sirois told authorities he killed Pugh so he could steal his drugs, with the intention of overdosing on it, July 6, 2012.
Sirois admitted using a metal pipe to hit Pugh in the head three or four times while Pugh was asleep on the couch.
He told police he was only trying to knock Pugh out.