KSNF/KODE—2022 will run out tomorrow. It’s been a busy year for the Four States – everything from legalized betting and marijuana to deaths that rocked the region.
The legal landscape saw some big changes in the Four States in 2022… starting with marijuana. In Missouri, voters approved the move from medical marijuana only to recreational use starting at age 21.
“Right now the state is doing about 35 million a month through all the 190 dispensaries that are open right now but they expect that to two and a half times that. So they believe that will generate 84 million a month,” said Tom Bommarito, Greenlight Dispensary.
Missouri was also one of the first states to take action after the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe vs. Wade. It triggered a statewide ban against abortions unless there is a medical emergency.
Sports betting was a big change across state lines in Kansas. The legislature passed the measure in the spring and it took effect in September.
“The next time we go to the Super Bowl or hopefully the World Series we can be in a position that people will be able to bet on things going on here in Kansas,” said Sen. Rob Olson, (R) Olathe.
Meanwhile, in Oklahoma, jail reform took center stage. House Bill 4369 changes the rules for parole for certain inmates, factoring in the type of crime and time served. It’s estimated 3,600 inmates will be eligible for release under the changes.
And a former member of the legal community found himself on the other side of the law. Former Ottawa County prosecutor Daniel Thomas Giraldi was charged with bribery of a public official, interstate travel in aid of racketeering, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, and use of a communication facility in furtherance of drug trafficking.
Then on Halloween, a Joplin double murder led to a standoff in Newton County.
“Had a handgun, kept us at bay for a couple hours. While negotiations went on, the Joplin Police Department was talking to him over the telephone about the case. Went as long as individual thought he could go and at that point, the individual shot himself,” said Newton Co. Sheriff Chris Jennings.
34-year-old David Rush of Wyandotte had two days earlier killed Stacy Rush of Joplin and Eric Stampfli of Grove at a home on the 2200 block of South Annie Baxter.
Another high-profile crime involves the deadly kidnapping of a pregnant Arkansas woman. Amber and Jamie Waterman, both of Pineville, are charged in the case that left both Ashley Bush and her baby dead.
“Suspect fled the area, a pursuit ensued,” said JPD Assistant Chief Brian Lewis.
And finally, 2022 is a year the Joplin Police Department will never forget, leaving not just one but two officers deceased in a deadly shooting. Corporal Ben Cooper and Officer Jake Reed passed away after a disturbance call near 4th and Range Line. Officer Rick Hirshey was injured but survived.
Capt. Will Davis fired the shots that ended the pursuit near 9th and Connecticut.