Region digest10/24

Wednesday, October 24, 2001

Southeast to hold forum on alcohol awareness

Southeast Missouri State University will observe Alcohol Awareness Week with a panel discussion Thursday in the University Center Ballroom.

The event will feature testimony from a mother and brother of victims of alcohol-related accidents and from police officers.

The discussion will take place from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. and is open to the public.

Sikeston chamber begins work on magazine

SIKESTON, Mo. -- To promote the community to prospective residents, businesses and visitors, the Sikeston Area Chamber of Commerce has announced plans to publish an annual magazine.

Titled Images of Sikeston, the four-color magazine will showcase the people, natural beauty and "progressive business climate" of the area.

It will feature original photography and professionally written stories about what makes the community special.

"This is a great way to tell our story. It allows us to communicate in an appealing format, to any individual or business, who we are as a community," said Missy Marshall, executive director.

The chamber has joined with Journal Communications, a renowned custom publisher, to produce the publication.

Two Sikeston teens hurt in area accident

SIKESTON, Mo. -- Two Sikeston teen-agers were injured Monday after being involved in a two-vehicle accident at 7:39 p.m. near Sikeston.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol reported that Krystal D. Appleton, 15, of Sikeston was driving west on Scott County Road 448, two miles north of Sikeston.

She crossed into the other lane of the roadway and collided with a vehicle driven by Darrel W. Latham, 34, who suffered minor injuries.

Amanda D. Knight, 15, of Sikeston, was a passenger in the Appleton vehicle. She and Appleton were transported by ambulance to Missouri Delta Medical Center. Latham was taken to Missouri Delta Medical Center by a member of his family.

IRS workers ordered to 'self-decontaminate'

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Workers at a regional Internal Revenue Service processing center were urged to "self-decontaminate" Tuesday after a mailroom employee opened an envelope containing an unknown brown substance, officials said.

No one reported ill health after the powdery substance was discovered in the envelope along with a blank IRS form, FBI spokesman Jeff Lanza said. The area in and around where the envelope was opened was decontaminated.

A hazardous materials crew collected the substance, which tested negative for dangerous chemicals but was sent to a Jefferson City laboratory for biological testing, Lanza said. Those test results are not expected before Friday.

About 20 workers who were nearby when the substance was found were instructed to self-decontaminate, meaning they were asked to give themselves thorough soap-and-water cleanings.

Alderman files to get charges dropped

ST. LOUIS -- An attorney for a city alderman accused of urinating in a trash can during a floor debate has filed for the charges to be dropped.

A city court judge scheduled a Dec. 18 hearing on the motion filed on behalf of Irene Smith, accused of a misdemeanor violation of the city code barring lewd conduct.

Smith was charged July 17 after a debate in which she appeared to urinate in a trash can as friends draped a sheet, a tablecloth and a quilt around her.

The incident occurred during a filibuster against a ward redistricting bill Smith opposes. The board's presiding officer ruled that Smith would lose control of floor debate if she left to use a restroom.

Smith has called the misdemeanor "very bogus" and has expressed eagerness to see how the city satisfies its burden of proving she did anything wrong -- when no one knows specifically whether she actually urinated.

-- From staff, wire reports

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