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Colin Jeffery

Colin Jeffery

Law enforcement officials want special gun docket

Saturday, 22 March 2014 15:00 Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A group of Missouri law enforcement officials are asking state lawmakers to create special armed-offender dockets for courts in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas.

A task force led by Attorney General Chris Koster issued the recommendations Friday as part of a report on curbing urban violence. The report asks the Legislature to consider special dockets that would prioritize violent offenses committed with firearms.

The group also asked law enforcement to boost cooperation and make better use of surveillance technology. It also recommended salary increases for county sheriffs.

Koster says Missouri's two largest cities each had more than 100 homicides last year. City officials and police department representatives from St. Louis City, Kansas City and St. Louis County joined Koster on the task force.

Jury awards $7.5 million to ex-St. Louis officer

Saturday, 22 March 2014 14:59 Published in Local News

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A jury has awarded a $7.5 million judgment to a former St. Louis police officer who claimed her supervising sergeant sexually harassed her and that she suffered retaliation for complaining.

The Post-Dispatch reports Tanisha Ross-Paige was awarded $300,000 in compensatory damages and $7.2 million in punitive damages from the St. Louis Board of Police Commissioners for retaliation. The jury found in favor of the police board on a discrimination claim.

Ross-Paige's lawyer John Eccher called Friday's verdict "absolutely huge for this type of case." A police spokeswoman declined comment.

The original lawsuit claimed Sgt. Steven Gori distributed a mock "wanted" poster with Ross-Paige's picture and comments about her body. The suit claims Gori and a lieutenant gave Ross-Paige unfavorable shifts and different performance evaluations after she complained.

Education officials endorse Missouri school plan

Saturday, 22 March 2014 14:56 Published in Local News

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri State Board of Education has endorsed a plan for assisting and intervening in school districts.

Districts are to be classified in tiers based upon performance, and state involvement would increase as performance worsened. Education officials could tailor what steps are taken based upon the situation within a school district.

The education board approved the framework Friday and directed state education officials to start work toward applying it to specific districts. Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro says the first step is likely to be an overview of districts that are currently unaccredited or have provisional accreditation.

Missouri officials have been considering school plans since a law took effect last year that gave the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education more power to intervene in struggling districts.

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