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Stories from Friday, May 18, 2007

Police begin crackdown on drugs (05/18/07)
Cape Girardeau police say a drug arrest Wednesday will be the first of many as the department steps up efforts to rid the city of drug traffic. David L. Hightower, 23, of 807 S. Ellis St. was arrested Wednesday on drug and weapons charges. Prosecutors charged Hightower with three felonies: possession of crack cocaine, receiving stolen property and unlawful use of a firearm...
Provision would let cities share tax revenue (05/18/07)
A provision tucked into an omnibus bill designed to help local governments could keep Jackson and Cape Girardeau from all-out competition over retailers when the East Main Street-LaSalle Avenue interchange is complete. The new Interstate 55 interchange under construction north of Center Junction is expected to be a boon to development both in Jackson and Cape Girardeau. ...
Transit authority to offer senior coupons (05/18/07)
Senior citizens will have a cheaper way to take care of pressing errands under a new coupon program announced Thursday by the Cape Girardeau County Transit Authority. Beginning June 6, county residents 60 and older can purchase up to eight coupons a month at $3 each that will allow them to travel one way from any point in the county to any other location, interim executive director Tom Mogelnicki said Thursday. The coupons must be purchased in advance to take advantage of the program, he said...
Man accused of sending threatening text messages (05/18/07)
A Jackson man faces harassment charges after police say he sent a text message to a woman threatening to burn her alive. Aaron L. Flessner, 30, was involved in an ongoing dispute with the woman and used his mobile phone to send her several threatening messages during the first part of April, said Sgt. Scott Eakers of the Jackson Police Department...
Red House to hold historic arts festival concurrent with ArtsCape Saturday (05/18/07)
The Red House Interpretive Center plans to enter the art festival arena Saturday with its inaugural historic arts and crafts festival, Mayfest. The idea started with Margaret Dement, who handles Red House publicity, said Red House director Jane Randol Jackson. Dement, an artist herself, thought starting a festival at the Red House would be a good way to showcase historic craft artists who don't get much exposure at other events...
Songs of the Southwest (05/18/07)
Cape Girardeau is an outpost in the world of Western swing music, far removed from the genre's base in the Southwestern United States. Yet this weekend hundreds have made the trek here from their homes for a three-day celebration of the music they love...
Scott City's improved pool to be dedicated Saturday (05/18/07)
Scott City will dedicate about $37,000 worth of improvements to its city pool with a ceremony Saturday morning. The improvements were paid for by a state grant, said Scott City Parks and Recreation Department director Phyllis Crump. The money paid for a new pool slide and a renovation of the pool house. Scott City's pool, located at the city park, was built in 1973...
White resigning from Mo. Supreme Court (05/18/07)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Supreme Court Judge Ronnie White, the first black judge appointed the state's highest court, said Friday that is stepping down from the bench. White said he plans to retire July 6 and would like to continuing working in the legal field, though he has no specific plans after leaving the Supreme Court...
Medicaid overhaul tops agenda at close of Legislature (05/18/07)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- On their final day of work, Missouri lawmakers were still wrestling with the biggest issue of their session -- an overhaul of the Medicaid health care program for the poor sought by Gov. Matt Blunt...
Nixon won't file criminal charges in Taum Sauk case (05/18/07)
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Attorney General Jay Nixon announced Friday he will not pursue criminal charges against Ameren Corp. over the December 2005 collapse of the Taum Sauk reservoir, which destroyed much of Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park in Reynolds County...
2006 fire leads lawmakers to mandate sprinklers, fire alarms (05/18/07)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Many Missouri group homes will face new fire safety requirements, a direct response to a deadly November fire, under a measure that won final legislative approval Thursday. The bill requires that most assisted living, skilled nursing and residential care facilities install sprinklers by the end of 2012 and fire alarm systems by the end of 2008...
State board to sponsor St. Louis charter school (05/18/07)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- The state Board of Education voted Thursday for the first time to become the sponsor of a charter school. There are 22 charter schools operating in the St. Louis and Kansas City school districts, all sponsored either by universities or local school districts. Four new charter schools have won state approval to open in the fall...
Medicaid talks resume; chances of passage increase (05/18/07)
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- With a deadline fast approaching, legislative leaders expressed new optimism Thursday that a deal could be struck on legislation revamping the state's Medicaid health care program for the poor Negotiations among House and Senate members broke apart late Wednesday, with some suggesting that a special legislative session could be needed...
Anheuser-Busch ends Spykes production amid criticism (05/18/07)
ST. LOUIS -- Anheuser-Busch said Thursday it will stop selling a malt beverage called Spykes, a product under fire from critics who charged that it appealed to underage drinkers. Chief executive August Busch IV made the announcement during a panel discussion at the National Alcohol Beverage Control Association annual conference in La Quinta, Calif., the brewery confirmed...
Former Kirksville mayor convicted in arson case (05/18/07)
ST. LOUIS -- A former Kirksville mayor was convicted Thursday on federal arson charges for starting a fire that destroyed her restaurant, said federal prosecutor Catherine Hanaway. Deborah Masten, 52, was found guilty of a felony count of maliciously damaging real and personal property by fire...
Firefighters seek to quell smoldering remains of N.J. fire (05/18/07)
LITTLE EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP, N.J. -- Unpredictable winds played tricks with firefighters trying to extinguish a once-massive wildfire, tamed the night before by a driving rain. Pockets of flame occasionally rose from parts of the nearly 22 square miles of charred trees, coaxed to life by winds that have vexed firefighters since the blaze began Tuesday...
Suspect in Fort Dix case denied bail (05/18/07)
CAMDEN, N.J. -- A man charged with helping five others plot a terrorist attack on Fort Dix will not be freed on bail, a judge ruled Thursday. Agron Abdullahu, 24, had asked U.S. Magistrate Joel Schneider to be released from custody into house arrest. But prosecutors successfully argued he was likely to flee and was a serious risk to the community's safety...
South begins offering pardons for segregation-era offenses (05/18/07)
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Lillie Mae Bradford is downright proud of her criminal record, but she wouldn't mind an official pardon. The 77-year-old woman from Montgomery, Ala., got arrested for disorderly conduct in 1951 just for walking to the front of a bus and asking for a transfer. Black passengers were not allowed up front back then...
Scion's boxy xB grows larger, more powerful (05/18/07)
Don't look for the new-generation Scion xB on television during its launch this spring. The boxy, early-for-2008 xB is debuting as a bigger, more powerful small car in a quirky, online "square universe" (Want2BSquare.com) that celebrates all things that are shaped like a box...
Lawyers for administration officials criticize Valerie Plame lawsuit (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- A lawyer for Vice President Dick Cheney said Thursday that Valerie Plame's lawsuit stemming from the exposure of her CIA identity is filled with "fanciful claims." "This is a fishing expedition," attorney John Kester said during nearly three hours of argument in U.S. District Court...
Wolfowitz resigns from World Bank (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz will resign at the end of June, he and the bank said late Thursday, ending his long fight to survive pressure for his ouster over the generous compensation he arranged for his girlfriend. His departure ends a two-year run at the development bank that was marked by controversy from the start, given his previous role as a major architect of the Iraq war when he served as the No. 2 official at the Pentagon...
Senators, White House announce immigration deal (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- The White House and key senators in both parties announced an agreement Thursday on an immigration overhaul that would grant quick legal status to millions of illegal immigrants already in the United States. It would also fortify the border...
House approves 'buy American' defense bill (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- The House passed a $646 billion defense bill Thursday that supports the Pentagon's ambitious weapons acquisition program but would place new restrictions on foreign-made technology the military could buy. The legislation, approved 397-27, has drawn a veto threat from the White House because of its "Buy American" provisions. The measure covers defense spending for the budget year that begins Oct. 1...
U.S. schools fall short in preparing for emergencies (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- When it comes to preparing for emergencies, the nation's schools could be getting better grades. While most school districts have plans for dealing with emergencies such as terrorist attacks, hurricanes or flu pandemics, those plans often fall short of what is needed, according to an analysis by the congressional Government Accountability Office. For example:...
Democrats seek no-confidence vote on attorney general (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- Two Senate Democrats said Thursday they will seek a no-confidence vote on Attorney General Alberto Gonzales over accusations that he carried out President Bush's political agenda at the expense of the Justice Department's independence...
Bush, Blair salute each other at White House farewell (05/18/07)
WASHINGTON -- To the last, neither George Bush nor Tony Blair wavered. The British prime minister allowed not a single regret about the war alliance that cost him his popularity and perhaps his job. The U.S. president, losing his best friend on the world stage, bristled at suggestions Blair should already be out the door...
U.S. targets six Mexican companies as fronts for drug kingpin (05/18/07)
MEXICO CITY -- On Thursday the U.S. Treasury Department banned Americans from doing business with six Mexican companies and 12 people it said were fronts for a cartel run by a powerful drug kingpin. It said the six companies -- including a dairy and day care center -- and individuals were involved in the operations of Ismael Zambada Garcia, identified as "one of Mexico's most powerful drug kingpins," who is based in the state of Sinaloa, home to many of Mexico's top drug smugglers...
France's new prime minister hits the ground running (05/18/07)
PARIS -- France's new prime minister hit the ground running -- literally. After a brief inauguration where he promised to "assure an eminent place" in the world for France, reform-minded conservative Francois Fillon turned up in shorts at the presidential palace for a jog with his new boss, President Nicolas Sarkozy...
Escaped hostage: American contractor held with him in Colombia has hepatitis (05/18/07)
BOGOTA, Colombia -- The mother of one of three American military contractors kidnapped by leftist rebels in 2003 said Thursday she was heartbroken to learn from an escaped captive that her son is suffering from hepatitis in the Amazon jungle. "I knew in my heart he was alive, but I didn't know he was sick," said Jo Rosano, mother of Marc Gonsalves, in a telephone interview from her home in Bristol, Conn...
Russian Orthodox leaders sign pact, mark healing of schism (05/18/07)
MOSCOW -- As bells pealed and worshippers wept, Russian Orthodox leaders signed a pact Thursday to heal an 80-year schism between the church in Russia and an offshoot set up abroad following the Bolshevik Revolution. "A historic event awaited for long, long years has occurred. ...
Israel attacks Hamas targets from the air (05/18/07)
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip -- Israel pounded more Hamas targets with airstrikes, killing 10 people and wounding dozens as it stepped deeper into fighting between the Islamic militants and the rival Fatah fighters of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The latest attack came early this morning as Israeli aircraft fired missiles east of Gaza City, killing four Palestinians, at least three of them Hamas militants, and wounding six people, Hamas and Palestinian doctors said. ...
Reports: Japanese man goes on rampage, killing a police officer and taking wife hostage (05/18/07)
TOKYO -- A man went on a shooting rampage in his central Japan home Thursday, killing a policeman, wounding three other people -- including his son and daughter -- and taking his wife hostage, news reports and police said. Hundreds of police surrounded 50-year-old Hisato Obayashi's tree-shrouded house in a tense standoff in Nagakute city overnight and into this morning. One news report said Obayashi was a former mobster...
U.S. argues for extradition of radical Islamic cleric held in Britain (05/18/07)
LONDON -- The United States argued Thursday for the extradition of a radical Islamic cleric imprisoned in Britain, accusing him of involvement in a global conspiracy to wage terrorist attacks on the United States and other Western countries. Abu Hamza al-Masri has been charged in the United States with trying to establish a terrorist training camp in Oregon, conspiring to take hostages in Yemen and facilitating terrorist training in Afghanistan...
Rams ride Modglin's right arm to sectional (05/18/07)
CHARLESTON -- Brian Horrell had the ultimate compliment for Scott City and junior pitcher Ryan Modglin. "We knew we had to be close to perfect today," Horrell said after his Chaffee team fell to the Rams in the Class 2 District 2 championship game at Hillhouse Park. "And we just didn't quite get it done."...
Southeast recruit tackles Crusaders (05/18/07)
Saxony Lutheran fell one win short of repeating as Class 1 District 3 baseball champion. A Valle Catholic senior headed to Southeast Missouri State on a football scholarship was largely responsible. Nathan Grass held the Crusaders to just one hit -- and that was disputed -- as top-seeded Valle rolled past second-seeded Saxony 7-0 in Thursday's title game at Yanks Field in Ste. Genevieve...
Oran routs Bernie for district title (05/18/07)
The beat goes on for the Oran baseball team, which wrapped up its fifth district title in six years Thursday with a 12-2 rout of Bernie in six innings at home. Oran has now won 15 district titles, including seven in the last 10 years. The last six times the Eagles have won their district they have gone on to make the state final four...
Central will host DeSmet in sectional (05/18/07)
Central's quest for its first state final four appearance in boys tennis will continue today in a home sectional against DeSmet. The Tigers rolled over Eureka 6-0 in Tuesday's regional, while DeSmet knocked off Chaminade 5-2. Central and DeSmet will play at 4 p.m. today, while Kirkwood will face Webster Groves at 4 p.m. in St. Louis in the other sectional. If the Tigers win, they will host the Kirkwood-Webster Groves winner Saturday...
Saxony Lutheran boys get ready to duel Polo in Class 1 (05/18/07)
Saxony Lutheran coach Larry Cleair is hoping a calculated gamble in moving senior Brandon Etzold out of the 3,200 relay and into the open 400 will pay off in a Class 1 state title when the state track and field championship begins today at Dwight T. Reed Stadium in Jefferson City...
Redhawks make final bid for tournament bye (05/18/07)
Southeast Missouri State and Tennessee Tech are both desperate for wins, but for different reasons. That should make for an intriguing season-ending Ohio Valley Conference series in Cookeville, Tenn. Southeast (30-20, 15-8) and Tech's Golden Eagles (24-27, 10-14) will play a 1 p.m. doubleheader today and a 1 p.m. contest Saturday...
Betemit's home run sends Dodgers past Cardinals (05/18/07)
LOS ANGELES -- Pinch-hitter Wilson Betemit's three-run homer with two outs in the fifth inning drove in the go-ahead runs, and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the St. Louis Cardinals 5-4 Wednesday night. The win was the fifth in six games for the Dodgers, putting them a season-high nine games over .500, and their second straight over St. Louis following a 10-game losing streak to the Cardinals...
To sneeze, perchance to die? (05/18/07)
Do you really 'die' briefly when you sneeze? JEFF McMILLAN sniffs at a common urban legend. The sounds of summer: Boat engines, parade bands, ice cream trucks. And sneezing. As allergy season shifts into high gear, those who let fly six or seven times in a row are sure to be reminded that each time you do, your heart stops, your senses shut down and your brain ceases to function but for a tiny fraction of a second...
ArtsCape's 'new vision' (05/18/07)
We're only a day away from the ArtsCape community arts festival. Don't know what ArtsCape is? It's been splashed all over the pages of our newspaper -- well maybe not all over -- for the past week. Basically ArtsCape is a community festival celebrating the arts in Cape -- music, visual art, all that good stuff. The setting: Capaha Park...
Artifacts (05/18/07)
Arena to hold monthly dance Thursday The Cape Girardeau Parks and Recreation Department will hold its monthly dance from 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday at the Arena Building. The band Country Generation will perform. For more information, call the parks department at 334-5421...
Extended family (05/18/07)
Matt Sanders: So tell me about your performance at the Academy of Country Music Awards Tuesday night. David Henry: We were playing with Tim McGraw. Yeah, it was cool. I don't know if you got to see it, but Tim came out and did this beautiful song, it was called "If You're Reading This" ... from the perspective of an American soldier in Iraq or Afghanistan and is now dead, and sent that posthumous letter. It was just real heavy, you know...
28 Weeks Later (05/18/07)
Justin Vandergriff HHH 1/2 3.5 stars This movie follows pretty much the same story as the first film. The story starts with a husband and wife hiding from the infected with five other survivors. The audience is soon thrown in to a heart-pounding chase between the infected and the survivors as the husband abandons his wife in order to survive. We then come to London where the survivors are being brought back from quarantine...
Be a part of history, or just read about it (05/18/07)
If you have already signed up for the First-Ever Second Annual Louis J. Lorimier Memorial World-Famous Downtown Golf Tournament and All-You-Can-Eat Catfish Buffet, good. If you haven't, here's the first of many reasons you will be hearing about in the next few weeks to do so...
Dem polling (05/18/07)
Rasmussen Reports, the public opinion outfit, recently asked voters whether President Bush knew about the 9-11 attacks beforehand. The findings? Well, here's how the research firm put it: "Democrats in America are evenly divided on the question of whether George W. Bush knew about the 9-11 terrorist attacks in advance. Thirty-five percent of Democrats believe he did know, 39 percent say he did not know and 26 percent are not sure."...
High speeds and bad tires can contribute to hydroplaning (05/18/07)
Dear Tom and Ray: I have a history of hydroplaning. I slid and rolled over in a GMC Jimmy while making a sharp right turn during a rainstorm. I also have hydroplaned in a Jeep Cherokee while driving in a light drizzle and going in a perfectly straight line. ...
At the theaters (05/18/07)
New at the theaters: 'The Namesake'; 'Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End'; 'Shrek the Third'; STILL PLAYING: '28 Weeks Later'; 'Blades of Glory'; 'Delta Farce'; 'Disturbia'; 'The Ex'; 'Fracture'; 'Georgia Rule'; 'The Invisible'; 'Meet the Robinsons'; 'Spider-Man 3'; 'Wild Hogs'
Movie review: 'Shrek the Third' looks great but lacks original zip (05/18/07)
"Shrek the Third" begins with a death, and from there the movie itself steadily dies. The third installment in this monster of an animated franchise still subverts the fairy tales we grew up knowing and loving, but it's smothered in a suffocating sense of been-there, done-that...
Paris Hilton won't appeal jail term for violating probation (05/18/07)
LOS ANGELES -- Paris Hilton won't appeal the 45-day jail term she was sentenced to this month for violating probation, according to court documents filed Thursday. A lawyer for the 26-year-old socialite notified Los Angeles County Superior Court that she is abandoning her appeal, said court spokeswoman Katherine Roberts...
Axing of 'Veronica Mars' a jolt to audience of teen sleuth show (05/18/07)
LOS ANGELES -- It's a mournful day for a niche TV crowd. OK, a cult crowd. "Veronica Mars" is no more. The smart CW dramedy starring blonde pixie Kristen Bell as a tough teenage sleuth with wisecracks and style to spare has been canceled after three seasons...
Wilford Brown (05/18/07)
MARBLE HILL, Mo. -- Wilford Brown of Marble Hill died Thursday, May 17, 2007, at Elder Care of Marble Hill. Arrangements are incomplete at Hutchings Funeral Chapel.
Mildred Boring (05/18/07)
Mildred Boring, 84, of Navasota, Texas, died Monday, April 23, 2007, at her home. She was born Feb. 1, 1923, in Weimer, Texas, daughter of the Rev. Paul and Elsie Dahse Piepenbrok. She and Charles Boring were married April 20, 1947, in Navasota. Boring spend her school years in Jackson. She worked in the banking business in Navasota, and was a member of Friedens United Church of Christ in Old Washington, Texas...
Kathryn Edds (05/18/07)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- Kathryn A. Edds, 69, of Perryville died Thursday, May 17, 2007, at her home. She was born Aug. 31, 1937, in Akron, Ohio, daughter of Fredrick William and Leatha Elizabeth Bradley Remmy. She first married Jimmy Arnette, who died in 1998. She and James O. Edds were married July 27, 2002...
Violet Williams (05/18/07)
PERRYVILLE, Mo. -- Violet A. Williams, 94, of Perryville died Thursday, May 17, 2007, at her home. She was born Dec. 2, 1912, in Ina, Ill., daughter of Ira J. and Mary Manesse Fowler Proffer. She and Lonnie R. Williams were married Sept. 21, 1929. He died May 26, 1990...
Births 5/18/07 (05/18/07)
Brown; Kuntz; Wheeler; Ritchey; Van Dorpe; Worley; Ethridge
Fire report 5/18/07 (05/18/07)
n At 4:08 p.m., emergency medical service in the 3000 block of Themis Street. n At 5:07 p.m., a still alarm in the 1200 block of North Spanish Street. n At 5:17 p.m., a still alarm at 1217 N. West End Blvd. n At 5:33 p.m., a still alarm at 1431 Merriwether St...
Police report 5/18/07 (05/18/07)
Arrests; Property damage
City sought accrual rate that is equitable (05/18/07)
By Douglas K. Leslie Recent news articles have brought to light the difference of opinions held by the Cape Girardeau Fire Union Local 1084 and city management. We feel obligated to provide the following information in order to more fully explain this issue...
Broadway bound (05/18/07)
Once again, Central Junior High School students under the masterful direction of Mike Dumey have put on a first-rate musical production, this time "Beauty and the Beast." And once again, audiences were wowed by the talent on display. That's what proud parents, friends and community members have come to expect from the junior high extravaganzas involving 100-plus students...
Tax credits key to historic preservation (05/18/07)
To the editor:The Missouri State Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program has been an immense success in encouraging investment and revitalization of Missouri's historic resources. The credits continue to stimulate substantial private investment, often in depressed areas, even in a period of overall economic slowdown...
Speak Out 5/18/07 (05/18/07)
Abortion decision; Control the dogs; Autism research; Stopping cancer; Weak remorse; Not impressed; Musical winner; Modern tools
Downtown cameras (05/18/07)
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