State briefs

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Mentally ill man fights state over right to vote

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- A St. Louis man filed a federal lawsuit Friday challenging a Missouri law that denies voting rights to some people who are mentally ill. Steven Prye said he moved to St. Louis from Illinois earlier this year and tried to register to vote, but wasn't allowed because he has a court-appointed guardian in Illinois, and a court is considering whether to appoint one for him in Missouri. Under the Missouri Constitution and state law, those who have a guardian because of "mental incapacity" or are found by a court to be "incapacitated" cannot vote and can face criminal charges if they do.

Two historic Catholic churches may close

ST. LOUIS -- Two historic Catholic churches that are on the National Registry of Historic Places would close next year under an Archdiocese of St. Louis plan to reduce the number of parishes in south St. Louis. St. John Nepomuk, the first Czech parish established in the United States, and St. Mary of Victories, considered home to St. Louisans of Hungarian descent, would be merged with another congregation to form a new regional parish. Doris Kroupa, chairwoman of St. John's parish council, said this week the parishioners would fight the recommendation.

-- From wire reports

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