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KENT, Ohio (AP) - Kent State University has suspended a wrestler for making a derogatory comment on his Twitter account about former Missouri football player Michael Sam, who announced he is gay.
 
Kent State said the suspension for Sam Wheeler was indefinite.
 
Wheeler first tweeted Monday using a homophobic slur, saying he couldn't watch a sports program because they were talking about Sam, who is an NFL prospect.
 
The 20-year-old Wheeler exchanged tweets with others who defended Sam and gays. His Twitter account was then deactivated.
 
Wrestling coach Jim Andrassy said he had talked to Wheeler, and the wrestler is "remorseful." There was no response to an attempt Wednesday to reach Wheeler by email.
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 11:49
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   Two people are now facing charges in the death of a toddler in North St. Louis yesterday (Tuesday). Emergency crews were called to a home at Rowen and Ridge Avenues before dawn.  There they found the lifeless body of 23 month old Jabria Phillips.  Detectives say she died of blunt force trauma.  
   Her stepfather, Deonte Evans is accused of beating the girl to death.  He's charged with second degree murder. The toddler's mother, Shanika Evans, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child.  
   The toddler's grandmother Brenda Baker, who lives in Detroit, learned about Jabria's death through news reports.  She was understandably heartbroken when she spoke with Fox 2 News about her granddaughter. "She was very energetic," Baker said.  "She laughed...every time I saw her laugh, I saw my son laugh...now I don't even have that."  Baker says the girl's father died last year.
 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 04:34
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   EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. (AP) - Students in the southwestern Illinois town of Edwardsville can blame the snow and cold for the loss of a pair of planned days off.
   The Belleville News-Democrat reports that the school board voted Monday to call off the March 3 Casimir Pulaski Day holiday. A teachers-only work day on March 21 was also called off.
   Students in the district have already had 10 days off this winter due to snow and cold.
   Superintendent Ed Hightower said a full spring break is still planned April 14-18 and school is still scheduled to end as planned on May 28. But he warned that winter isn't over.
   Pulaski Day honors the Polish-born nobleman who trained American cavalry during the Revolutionary War and gave his life for the war effort.
 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 02:22
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UPDATE: The City of St. Louis plans to appear a circuit court judge's ruling that invalidates the city's red light camera program.

 

Tuesday's ruling bars the city from processing payments for tickets and sending out violation notices. The city says they responded to and fixed problems in the red light camera program that were cited in a 2013 ruling. City Counselor Michael Garvin says they are going to ask the state Supreme Court to settle the matter.

 

Police Chief Sam Dotson says the cameras have reduced red light running--he says some of the first intersections to have the cameras installed have seen citations drop by 80 percent. 

 

EARLIERA judge in St. Louis says red light camera tickets are unenforceable.  A ruling Tuesday by St. Louis Circuit Judge Steven Ohmer nullifies the city's red light camera ordinance and bars the city from enforcing any part of it.  That includes processing payments for tickets and sending out violation notices or collection letters.  

 

The ruling stems from a petition by two women who'd received red light camera tickets.  Their attorney had argued that the law had already been voided by four other court rulings.  The judge agreed.

 

Proponents of the law had argued that the women lacked standing because their tickets had already been dismissed.  Judge Ohmer called this case an exception because of the  "general public interest."  He also wrote that it was obvious that the tickets had been dismissed in an attempt to avoid a ruling on the ordinance.

 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 01:12
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   JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri Senate has endorsed legislation that seeks to send federal agents to jail for enforcing gun control laws.
   The Republican-led Senate gave first-round approval to the measure late Tuesday. It would declare federal gun controls laws that infringe on gun rights to be null and void. Federal agents enforcing those laws could be prosecuted and punished by up to one year in jail.
   However, the measure would likely face a court challenge if approved. And courts have consistently ruled that states cannot nullify federal laws.
   Republican Sen. Brian Nieves is sponsoring the bill. He says it protects liberties, but opponents say it would lead to more violence.
   The bill, which needs one more vote before moving to the House, would also allow designated school personnel to carry concealed weapons in schools.
 
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 01:00
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri House members have given first-round approval to legislation taking aim at synthetic drugs.
 
The bill would add several specific substances to what is considered synthetic marijuana.
 
It was endorsed by a voice vote Tuesday and needs a second vote before moving to the Senate.
 
In recent years, Missouri has tried to keep pace with evolving synthetic drugs and twice has approved legislation targeting them. Sponsoring House member Shawn Rhoads says the current bill is needed to stay ahead in the effort.
 
Lawmakers in 2010 barred spice cannabinoids sold as incense known as K2. A year later, the definition of marijuana in state drug laws was expanded to cover synthetics. The 2011 measure also barred substances marketed as incense or "bath salts" that mimic the effects of cocaine and marijuana.
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:30
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As the city of St. Louis celebrates turning 250 years old, event organizers are hoping for a world record.

 

STL250 is organizing a Burnin' Love Festival for Friday. The group wants to invite 250 couples to get either engaged of re-engaged on Art Hill on Valentine's Day. Couples can register to take part at the stl250 website. If chosen, they could win prizes ranging from a steak dinner to a diamond engagement ring.

 

The festival takes place at Art Hill in Forest Park, starting at 4:30 p.m. The "lovin' moment ceremony" will occur at 7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:26
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A California man who served as a youth minister in Florissant, is facing sex abuse charges.
 
Brandon Milburn is accused of sodomizing two 11-year-old boys in his church--the First Christian Church on Patterson Road. Investigators believe the crimes took place sometime between 2007 and 2009. Police are now asking any other potential victims to come forward.
 
California officers are trying to determine if there are any victims in that state.
 
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:20
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A 21-year-old man is facing charges for allegedly killing his roommate, who was a convicted sex-offender.

 

The St. Clair County State's Attorney announced the charges today. Police say that Mohammed Abuharba shot William Harriel Jr on February 6 and left him in the road to die. Investigators say that Harriel's status as a sex offender does not appear to be part of the motive. 

Tuesday, 11 February 2014 17:19
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Supporters of a higher wages are urging Missouri lawmakers to let voters decide whether to increase the state's minimum wage to $10 an hour.
 
Missouri's minimum wage currently is $7.50 an hour - 25 cents higher than the federal minimum wage.
 
Several low-income workers testified Tuesday before a Missouri Senate committee in support of a proposed ballot measure increasing the minimum wage. The workers said they often must skip meals because they don't earn enough to pay all the bills for food, housing, utilities and transportation.
 
A Webster University economist said a minimum wage increase would help the economy, because workers likely would spend the additional money.
 
Lobbyists for several business groups testified against the measure, citing concerns that it could squeeze low-skill workers out of jobs.
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 15:41
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