Carjacking

Missouri man sentenced to 10 years in federal prison without parole for carjacking

A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for carjacking. Robert J. Rule, 38, of Grandview, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Greg Kays to 10 years in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered Rule to pay $500 in restitution to his victim. On July 9, 2021, Rule pleaded guilty to one count […]

Prison Sentence

Missouri woman sentenced to 9 years in federal prison without parole for illegal firearm

A Missouri woman who was arrested with 19 firearms and quantities of illegal drugs in her home was sentenced in federal court for illegally possessing a firearm. Robin A. Graham, 38, of Kansas City, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Greg Kays to nine years in federal prison without parole. On June 22, 2021, Graham […]

Unemployment Benefits Graphic

Missouri Senate hears bipartisan push to forgive mistakenly overpaid unemployment benefits

(Missouri Independent) – Tracie Engelmeyer was among hundreds of bus drivers who were furloughed in St. Louis County in March 2020 because of the pandemic. School-district authorities told them that even though drivers are contracted labor, they would qualify for unemployment benefits and urged them to apply. Engelmeyer recalled the conversation she had with a […]

Josh Hawley Courtesy of Missourinet

Hawley questions why Department of Homeland Security is focusing on “Woke Climate Agenda” instead of border crisis

Senator Josh Hawley wrote to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas demanding answers on the agency’s Climate Change Professionals Program and why they are focusing on woke partisan government programs while ignoring the crisis at our southern border. Senator Hawley wrote, “In a press release, you said, ’The Climate Change Professionals Program will be instrumental in […]

Sex Offender graphic

Registered sex offender sentenced to 15 years in prison for possessing images of child sexual abuse

A man was sentenced to 15 years in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release for possessing images of the sexual abuse of children. Ian Andrew Zearley, 40, of Louisa County, Virginia, pleaded guilty to possession of obscene visual representations of the sexual abuse of children in July 2021. According to court documents, Zearley […]

Meth with police banner

Man sentenced to 21 years for meth trafficking at Missouri hotel

A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for possessing methamphetamine to distribute when officers found large amounts of illegal drugs in his room at a Camdenton, Mo., hotel. Anthony Martinez Harris, 49, of Kansas City, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes to 21 years and 10 months in federal prison without […]

Prison Sentence

Missouri man sentenced to 10 years in prison without parole for illegal firearms and marijuana grow operation

A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for growing marijuana and illegally possessing dozens of firearms. Darrin Dale Smithee, 56, of Auxvasse, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes to 10 years in federal prison without parole. On Aug. 31, 2021, Smithee pleaded guilty to one count of manufacturing marijuana and one […]

Child Sex Crimes

Missouri man sentenced to 10 years in prison for enticing a minor for illicit sex

A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for attempting to meet a law enforcement officer, posing online as a 14-year-old girl, for illegal sexual activity. Darren Wade Lasley, 33, Columbia, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes to 10 years in federal prison without parole.  On Aug. 18, 2021, Lasley was found […]

Governor Parson talks with lawmakers as he leaves House Chamber after State of the State address (Photo courtesy of Tim Bommel - Missouri House)

Governor proposes record $47.3B Missouri budget as he taps surplus and federal aid

(Missouri Independent) – Gov. Mike Parson proposed massive new spending on infrastructure and college buildings, and still found money to set aside for pensions and future revenue shortfalls, in the budget submitted Wednesday to lawmakers. Missouri will enter the new fiscal year with nearly $3 billion in surplus general revenue, an anticipation of record future tax collections, […]

Heroin and Needle

Kansas man sentenced to 12 years in Missouri prison for heroin conspiracy

A Kansas man was sentenced in federal court for his role in a heroin trafficking conspiracy. Solomon B. Hawthorne, 31, of Kansas City, Kansas was sentenced by U.S. Chief District Judge Beth Phillips to 12 years and one month in federal prison without parole. The sentence includes a term of two years for violating his federal […]

Prison Sentence

Missouri man sentenced to 13 years in prison without parole for meth trafficking and illegal firearm

A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for methamphetamine trafficking and illegally possessing a firearm. Jason A. Hamann, 48, Springfield, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to 13 years and five months in federal prison without parole. On June 23, 2020, Hamann pleaded guilty to participating in a conspiracy to distribute […]

Sam Graves

Graves, Huffman introduce “Save America’s Rural Hospitals Act”

Congressman Sam Graves and Congressman Jared Huffman introduced the bipartisan Save America’s Rural Hospitals Act to rescue rural hospitals on the brink of bankruptcy and help put these critical care providers back on solid ground. “This isn’t a new problem. Our rural hospitals have been struggling to keep their doors open to patients for years,” said […]

Show Me Strong Recovery Task Force

Show-Me Strong Recovery Task Force releases final report of recommendations

Governor Mike Parson announced that the Show-Me Strong Recovery Task Force has released its final report of recommendations to support small businesses across the state. In the report, the Task Force summarizes its findings and provides potential solutions related to workforce, supply chain, access to resources, broadband, and support for minority- and women-owned businesses. “As […]

Charges Filed news graphic

Former utility clerk for city of Forsyth charged with felony stealing

Carla D. Combs, a former utility clerk for the city of Forsyth, has been charged with one felony count of stealing by the Taney County Prosecuting Attorney for allegedly misappropriating $2,000 in utility deposits from the city. An audit in 2021 by State Auditor Nicole Galloway uncovered that the money was missing between May 2019 and November 2019. […]

Maximize Northwest Missouri Website

Community leaders celebrated for commitment to learning

Community leaders in six northwest Missouri counties were part of Maximize Northwest Missouri’s 2021 Regional Learning Collaborative that wrapped up late last summer.  “Some of the keywords that participants used to describe their learning experience include: enlightening, motivating, empowering, informative, inspiring, insightful, and team-building,” shared Mary Hinde, president of The Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri. […]

Jobs Report

Missouri monthly job report shows unemployment rate at 3.5 percent

Missouri non-farm payroll employment increased from October 2021 to November 2021, and the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased by two-tenths of a percentage point. Employment, seasonally adjusted, increased by 7,600 jobs over the month, with job gains in both the goods-producing and service-providing industries. The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.5 percent in November […]