Region/state briefs 01/14/03

Tuesday, January 14, 2003

Dexter teenager killed in two-car accident

DEXTER, Mo. -- A Dexter teenager was killed and five others injured in an accident Monday at the intersection of Two Mile Road and Grant Street just outside of Dexter.

Adam Lott, 15, of Dexter, a passenger in one of the vehicles, was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, Lott was a passenger in a car driven by Thomas Reiker, 16, of Dexter, which was traveling south on Two Mile Road. Reiker failed to yield, officials said, and pulled into the path of a 1973 Ford driven by Steven Ulm, 16, of Dexter.

The impact caused Reiker's 1993 Ford to tip onto the passenger side, trapping and killing Lott.

Reiker and his sister Abby, 13, sustained moderate injuries and were taken to Three Rivers Healthcare Center in Poplar Bluff, Mo. Summer Carter, 15, of Dexter, and Aaron Lavender, 15, of Dexter, Reiker's other passenger, sustained minimal injuries and were taken to Missouri Southern Healthcare in Dexter.

Ulm and his brother Greg, 10, sustained moderate injuries and were taken to Three Rivers Healthcare North Campus.

Sikeston man pleads guilty to distribution

A Sikeston, Mo., man pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court to three felony counts of distribution of 5 grams or more of cocaine base.

Roy Yarber, 72, of Sikeston, also agreed to forfeit a 1995 Chevrolet Tahoe and certain real estate in Sikeston to the U.S. government. He appeared before U.S. District Judge E. Richard Webber.

Yarber admitted he sold cocaine base to a confidential informant in Sikeston on April 24, May 9 and Aug. 23, 2002. He now faces up to 40 years in federal prison and a $2 million fine on each count. Sentencing was set for April 4.

Judge throws out jury award in child seat lawsuit

ST. LOUIS -- A judge has thrown out a jury's $8.5 million award in a case of a toddler paralyzed in a one-car wreck, ruling the verdict apparently included unrequested punitive damages against the driver and the maker of the car seat.

The family of Denver John "D.J." Steele, who was 2 when injured in the November 1996 crash, plans to appeal the decision to overturn the damage award and order a new trial.

After a three-week trial, a St. Louis Circuit Court jury last August awarded the money to Damon Steele, whose son was riding in an Evenflo Co. Inc. car seat in the November 1996 crash near Fredericktown.

Now 8 years old, D.J. must use a catheter to urinate and will be paralyzed for life, the family's attorney has said. The plaintiffs contended at trial that while the car seat caused D.J. to be thrown in a way that severed his spine, the car's driver suffered only minor injuries.

Father accused of killing 3-month-old daughter

CLAYTON, Mo. -- A University City man was accused Monday of killing his infant daughter by submerging her in scalding water in their home.

St. Louis County prosecutors charged Raymond Whitfield, 37, with second-degree felony murder in last week's death of his 3-month-old daughter, Faquita.

Faquita, who authorities said suffered burns to more than half her body after being placed in the tub by her angered father, died Saturday at St. Louis Children's Hospital.

-- From staff, wire reports

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: