Around Southeast Missouri 1/11/07

Thursday, January 11, 2007

DNR investigates Cardwell soil, water

CALDWELL, Mo. -- Missouri Department of Natural Resources personnel will return to Cardwell to continue investigations into soil and water contamination at the southern Dunklin County community. Environmental emergency specialist Ron Sheely said crews plan to expose and sample water lines that might have been compromised with petroleum product during a 1998-1999 water project, checking sections of PVC mains and service connections to see if any of the pipes have been damaged by the solvents. DNR crews visited Cardwell a number of times after former councilman Greg McGrew submitted complaints about the water project and alleged violations of state law committed by the owners of a former bulk propane plant at Cardwell. Since the allegations began, the town's mayor stepped down; two water department superintendents left the post in succession; a water department superintendent in a neighboring town pulled his license; water rates in the community have increased; the state's Department of Health and Senior Services performed a cancer inquiry; and DNR has returned time and again to test and retest for soil and water contamination.

-- Daily Dunklin Democrat, Kennett

Two motorists injured in collision on U.S. 60

ESSEX, Mo. -- A two-vehicle accident on U.S. 60 at the junction with Route FF sent two Bernie, Mo., residents to the hospital last week. According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Fred Fowler and his wife, Sherry, were transported to Missouri Southern Healthcare in Dexter, Mo., after Fowler's 1994 Ford Aerostar was broadsided by a 1994 Dodge Ram pickup truck driven by Essex resident Porter Clark. Fowler was eastbound on U.S. 60 at about 1:45 p.m. and Clark was southbound on Route FF, just north of its junction with U.S. 60. Clark was uninjured.

-- The Daily Statesman, Dexter

Charleston man found guilty of murder

CHARLESTON, Mo. -- After deliberating for almost three and a half hours Friday, a jury found Brandon C. Johnson, 25, guilty of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the shooting death of Jemorrio A. Betts, 20, of Charleston. The homicide occurred in May 2004 at Mr. C's Night Club near Morley, Mo. Scott County Prosecuting Attorney Paul Boyd, who appeared at the Mississippi County Courthouse, called the incident an "ambush, deliberate premeditated murder in the first degree." Betts was shot in his car while in a parking lot at about 12:30 a.m., after which Betts entered the nightclub and collapsed on the floor, according to police reports. Post-trial motions are scheduled for Feb. 27, Johnson is serving a prison sentence on another conviction, Boyd said.

-- Standard Democrat, Sikeston

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