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(Jefferson City, MO) -- Legislative Republicans have chosen state Representative Dean Plocher to be the next Missouri House speaker. The Des Peres lawmaker will succeeded Speaker Rob Vescovo of Arnold. The full Missouri House will vote on the leadership change during the 2023 regular legislative session. Since Republicans have a large majority in the House, Plocher isn’t expected to have any trouble assuming the powerful office. He is currently the House majority floor leader, which is considered to be the second-most powerful position in the chamber.

(St. Louis, MO) -- A St. Louis circuit judge has refused to throw out the lawsuit filed against Rams owner Stan Kroenke and the N-F-L Judge Christopher McGraugh issued the order Tuesday. Kroenke, the Rams, and the professional football league were trying to avoid a high-stakes civil trial that is scheduled to be heard in January. The suit was filed in 2017 after the Rams were relocated to Los Angeles. St. Louis, St. Louis County, and the St. Louis Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority claim the N-F-L broke its own rules on relocation that were set decades ago. It argues the move was a breach of contract, fraud, illegal enrichment, and interference in business by the team and the league – causing significant public financial loss.

(Shelbyville, MO) -- A northeast Missouri woman is charged with two sex-related crimes against a child. The charges were filed this week in Shelby County against 33-year-old Sara Dodd of Kirksville. Prosecutors accuse Dodd of holding her hand over a young girl’s mouth so she couldn’t scream while Joshua Dodd sexually abused the victim. The girl was less than 12 years old. A jury trial for Joshua Dodd is on the court’s calendar for early December. Sara Dodd is facing charges of first-degree statutory rape and first-degree child molestation.

(Kansas City, MO) -- The owner of the Kansas City Royals says the team will start thinking about a new downtown stadium over the next five years. The Royals have played home games at Kauffman Stadium on the city’s east side for 48 years. The team’s lease with the Jackson County Sports Complex Authority is set to expire in 2031. After hearing from Royals owner John Sherman about the possibility, the Downtown Council of Kansas City said it’s pushing for the move after seeing how similar moves have benefited other cities. Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas says he’s looking forward to talking to Royals ownership about the team’s future plans.

(St. Louis, MO) -- An initiative unveiled Tuesday by St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones is aimed at tackling the increase in violence in the city’s downtown area. The Downtown Engagement and Public Safety Initiative will be a public-private partnership. Jones says she is going to add 30 officers on weekends in the area over the next five weeks. Multiple offices have reported windows being shot out and several businesses are considering moving their offices. Jones says the other part of her initiative is bringing more events to the downtown area. That’s where the private business leaders get involved. The mayor says events will help build the perception of the area’s safety and will encourage visitors to return.

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