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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) — The white supremacist charged in shootings that left three people dead at two Jewish community sites in suburban Kansas City made his first court appearance Tuesday.
 
Frazier Glenn Cross was wearing a dark, quilted, sleeveless vest and crossed his arms as he appeared by video feed Tuesday in Johnson County court. He spoke only when answering routine questions from the judge, and requested a court-appointed lawyer.
 
Cross is being held on $10 million bond and his next court appearance is scheduled for April 24.
 
Physician William Lewis Corporon, 69, and his 14-year-old grandson, Reat Griffin Underwood, were shot and killed outside of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City. Both were Methodist. Moments later, Terri LaManno, a 53-year-old Catholic occupational therapist and mother of two, was gunned down outside Village Shalom, a Jewish retirement complex where she was visiting her mother.
 
Cross, a 73-year-old Vietnam War veteran from southwest Missouri who founded the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in his native North Carolina and later the White Patriot Party, is being held on $10 million bond.
 
In Kansas, one of the narrow circumstances in which capital murder cases are pursued includes the intentional killing of more than one person in "the same act or transaction or in two or more acts or transactions connected together or constituting parts of a common scheme or course of conduct."
 
In this case, a single charge was applied to the deaths of Corporon and his grandson because the deaths occurred in a very short period of time as part of the same act, prosecutors said. LaManno's death doesn't meet the standard for capital murder, Howe said, but he would not provide details or evidence gathered in the case to explain why.
 
Federal prosecutors say there's enough evidence to warrant putting the case before a grand jury as a hate crime. Moving the case from state to federal prosecutors would likely mean tougher punishments if Cross is convicted, but U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said Tuesday that federal charges were likely a week or more away. Cross' state case would have to be resolved before he could be moved to a federal trial.
 
"Our system is more nimble, we can move a little bit quicker than the federal system. We've alleged he came into the community I've been elected to protect. ... This isn't about retribution, this is about seeking justice," Howe said.
 
Cross shouted "Heil Hitler" at television cameras as he was arrested after Sunday's killings, which shocked the city on the eve of Passover and refocused attention on the nation's problem with race-related violence.
 
The Southern Poverty Law Center, a nonprofit that monitors the activities of known white supremacists, says Cross, who also went by the name Frazier Glenn Miller, has been immersed in white supremacy most of his life. During the early 1980s, Cross was "one of the more notorious white supremacists in the U.S.," according to the Anti-Defamation League.
 
He was the target of a nationwide manhunt in 1987 for violating terms of his bond while appealing a North Carolina conviction for operating a paramilitary camp, and federal agents tracked Cross and three other men to a rural Missouri mobile home stocked with hand grenades and automatic weapons.
 
A federal grand jury indicted Cross on weapons charges and accused him of plotting robberies and the assassination of the Southern Poverty Law Center's founder. He served three years in federal prison.
 
Cross also ran for the U.S. House in 2006 and the U.S. Senate in 2010 in Missouri, each time espousing a white-power platform.
Published in National News

   Police say the victims' 18 year old son is among the four suspects arrested in the deaths of a St. Francois County couple whose home burned Monday morning.  

   The bodies of 50 year old Stanley Halter and his 46 year old wife, Tammy were found after firefighters extinguished the pre-dawn blaze at the couples rural Park Hills home.  Police say an autopsy indicated that Stanley and Tammy Halter had been murdered.  

   Four people are now in custody, including 18 year old Dallas Halter, the couple's son.  Also in custody are 19 year old William Carrico, 19 year old Adam Moore and 24 year old Maxwell Lee.  All four were arrested on Wednesday at different locations in and around Ironton County.

   Police haven't released a possible motive for the killings.

Published in Local News

WEST PLAINS, Mo. (AP) — A south-central Missouri woman will be sentenced in May for the death of an infant she admitted dropping because the baby wouldn't stop crying.

KYTV reports 21-year-old Bobbie Derryberry of Mountain View pleaded guilty this week in Howell County Circuit Court to second-degree murder. Other charges were dropped.

Derryberry was accused of killing her 5-month-old daughter, Autumn Nash, in June 2013. Hospital records showed the baby had a fractured skull, broken ribs and extensive bruising.

Investigators said Derryberry told officers she dropped the baby to the floor because she wouldn't stop crying. She also hit the child two or three times on the back, face and nose.

Derryberry had two other children who were placed with a guardian in 2011 after Derryberry was convicted of child endangerment.

Published in Local News

St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Police have identified the child who was shot and killed in his home Wednesday night.

 

11-year-old Anotonio Johnson was sitting at his computer when a shooter fired between eight and ten shots into the house. Police Chief Sam Dotson says Antonio died at the scene. Dotson says the gunman climbed onto the ledge of a side window, broke the glass and started shooting.

 

There were seven people in the house including a 4 year old, two teenagers,  three adults and the 11-year-old victim. One of the teens had been shot in a prior incident and police are hoping he can provide some useful information about last night's attack.

Published in Local News

St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - A suspect is in custody after the body of a woman was found just a few blocks away from the Edward Jones Dome.

 

Police say the woman was beaten to death and have a male suspect in custody. St. Louis homicide detectives are currently investigating this case. 

Published in Local News
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) - A suspect in the slaying of a Cape Girardeau tattoo artist whose body was found in a Bonne Terre septic tank has pleaded guilty to federal drug charges in a separate case.
 
Forty-three-year-old Brent Bouren of St. Louis faces state charges of second-degree murder, armed criminal action, witness tampering, second-degree assault and felonious restraint in connection with the death of Samuel "Tick" Francis.
 
Bouren is accused of watching another man attack Francis with a baseball bat, participating in the assault and threatening witnesses with similar treatment to keep them quiet.
 
The Southeast Missourian reports that Bouren pleaded guilty Monday to one count each of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and conspiracy to distribute cocaine. A sentencing hearing is set for early June.
Published in Local News

St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Justin Deryke, the man accused of murdering his 7-year-old niece last year, is headed to prison for the rest of his life.

 

Deryke pleaded guilty to the murder of Willow Long. On September 7 Deryke was watching Willow when he chased her out of the the house. Deryke claimed that Willow fell on a pile branches and one pierced her neck. An autopsy revealed she suffered stab wounds.

 

As part of the plea agreement, Deryke was sentenced to life in prison.

Published in Local News
St. Louis, MO (KTRS) - Hailey Owens was abducted and murdered in Springfield, Missouri last month.
 
Now her parents are suing Craig Michael Wood, the man accused of killing young Hailey. Stacey Barfield and Markus Owens filed a wrongful death lawsuit last week. The lawsuit seeks damages to cover the costs connected to Hailey's death as well as punitive damages.
 
Wood has been charged with first degree murder, armed criminal action, and child kidnapping. 
 
Published in Local News

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) — An East St. Louis man is jailed on $1 million bond after being accused in a shooting death last month.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that St. Clair County prosecutors charged 20-year-old Montrell Spencer this week with first-degree murder.

Authorities say 49-year-old Leon Lucas Junior of East St. Louis was killed February 22nd during an altercation.

Spencer was arrested Monday by officers who responded to a home in connection with a reported domestic dispute. Police say that after being arrested on suspicion of domestic battery, investigators learned he was suspected in Lucas' death.

Online court records don't show whether he has an attorney. He has an unlisted home telephone number.

Published in Local News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - A judge has denied a new trial for a young Missouri woman who pleaded guilty to murder for the slaying of a 9-year-old neighbor girl.
 
Alyssa Bustamante was 15 years old in 2009 when she killed Elizabeth Olten and buried her in a wooded area near Jefferson City. Bustamante wrote in her diary that it was an "ahmazing" and "pretty enjoyable" experience.
 
Bustamante originally was charged with first-degree murder. That would have carried a mandatory life sentence without parole. She pleaded guilty to a second degree murder and was sentenced to life with the chance of parole.
 
Several months after her plea, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled juveniles cannot face automatic life sentences.
 
Bustamante claimed she would not have pleaded guilty if she had known that case was pending.
Published in Local News
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