News to Know (07/16/2021)

Albany, NY- New York, Governor, Andrew Cuomo is expected to be questioned on Saturday in connection with the probe into allegations of sexual harassments and misconduct against him. That’s according to a source familiar with the New York attorney general’s investigation into the Governor. Cuomo also faces an impeachment inquiry in the state assembly.

Airport Drive, Mo- Jasper County authorities are searching for two suspects in connection with a shooting in Airport Drive.
the Sheriff’s Department says witnesses reported hearing gunshots in the parking lot of Harps Grocery Store around 1:35 p.m. Thursday. Investigators say they found evidence in the parking lot of a possible shooting including evidence of quote “possible injuries”. Authorities say they’ve located the victims, a 22-year-old Webb City, woman and a 33-year-old man from California. The Jasper County Sheriff’s office released a description of the possible suspects. Police say the driver was a black man, driving a dark red Kia SUV, his passenger, another suspect, is a black man with four braids in his hair and neck tattoos.

Monett, Mo- a Monett Missouri man is dead following a Zero Turn lawn mower crash Thursday evening. According to the Missouri Highway Patrol 72-year-old Raymond Haddock lost control of the lawn mower and overturned into a creek. Haddock was pronounced dead at the scene.

Joplin, Mo- An uptick in Missouri Covid-19 cases has led to a bigger push to get vaccinated. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services labels several Southwest Missouri areas as Covid-19 hotspots, including Joplin and Jasper and Newton Counties. The Jordan Valley Community Health Center held a vaccination clinic in Joplin to help reach those still hesitant about getting their shot. They say by doing outreach with their mobile vaccine unit, they hope to see more of Missouri’s population vaccinated.


Jasper County police arrest two caught stealing mail

JASPER COUNTY, Mo. – Police arrest two people in Jasper County for stealing mail, including an envelope that contained a $1,200 check.

On June 22, a Jasper County Deputy was checking a vehicle under the White Oak Birdge near State Highway 37 and Incline Road when he saw a male sitting in a tall grassy area. Police say he ducked down as if to hide. The deputy made contact with two people in the area, 49-year-old Frederick Foshag of Carthage, Missouri and 49-year-old Heidi Masters of Pittsburg, Kansas. Both had warrants out for their arrest.

While investigating the area, the deputy found opened mail where the two were sitting. Among the mail was a check for over $1,200. The owner of the mail was contacted and the mail was returned.

Fire devastates Whitehead Farm Supply in La Russell

LA RUSSELL, Mo. – A large fire left extensive damage at Whitehead Farm Supply in La Russell, Missouri Friday morning.

Firefighters received the call around 4:00 a.m. Avilla, Jasper, Carthage and Golden City Fire Departments responded to the scene. Crews had it under control before 6:00 a.m.

The fire leveled a building, however officials say no one was hurt. There’s no word yet on what caused the fire.

Southwest Missouri counties provide transparent spending data online

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Jasper and Newton Counties are counted among the 10 counties participating in the state’s Local Government Checkbook Program. Participants provide spending data to available on online in an effort government transparency.

Spending data from ten local governments, Cape Girardeau County, Cass County, Clay County, Cole County, Franklin County, Greene County, Jasper County, Newton County, St. Charles County and the City of St. Louis, can be searched, with 16 additional counties in progress.

Visitors to the Checkbook can examine expenditure data detailing funds, departments, vendors, payment descriptions, and totals for the available government entities.

“Government transparency is essential to a functioning republic,” Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick said. “As Treasurer, I will always strive to improve transparency because I want Missourians to trust that their government is working for them and their tax dollars are being spent wisely. Increased transparency helps facilitate that trust and I am hopeful that more county leaders will volunteer to participate in the local government checkbook.”

In 2020, Treasurer Fitzpatrick announced the expansion of the Show-Me Checkbook to include local governments. He also facilitated aggregating state expenditures related to CARES Act funding in one portal on the Treasurer’s Office website for Missourians to search. The Local Governments section of the Show-Me Checkbook can be found here.

March 14 kicked-off Sunshine Week. The week celebrates open government and access to public information. It runs through March 21.

Part of I-49 to close during concrete replacement project

JASPER COUNTY, Mo. – Segments of I-49 will close to traffic beginning on April 5 while MoDOT replaces the concrete pavement between I-44 and a point south of Jasper County Route FF (32nd Street) in Joplin. The closing could last for up to 16 days.

Contractor crews will remove and replace 1.4 miles of concrete pavement beginning in the southbound lanes. Both lanes of traffic will be closed in each direction ’round the clock. When that work is complete, the southbound lanes will be reopened to traffic and crews will move to the northbound lanes. Both northbound lanes will be closed ‘round the clock.

Traffic Impacts:

  • Phase 1:
    • All lanes of southbound I-49 CLOSED ’round the clock for up to 16 days for pavement replacement
    • All lanes of northbound I-49 open
  • Phase 2:
    • All lanes of northbound I-49 CLOSED ‘round the clock for up to 16 days for pavement replacement
    • All lanes of southbound I-49 open
  • Route FF (32nd Street) ramps will be CLOSED in the direction of the work being done
  • Expect increased travel times
  • Drivers will be directed to signed detour using Business Loop 49, I-44 and Missouri Route 59

Details released in Avilla homicides

AVILLA, Mo. – Court documents reveal the man charged in a double homicide at an Avilla, Missouri home says he committed the crime after learning of his girlfriend’s murder.

According to a probable cause statement 24-year-old Kevin Clay Johnson admitted to going to 255 Greenfield Street in Avilla Saturday to see his girlfriend, Brylee Obanion. When he arrived, Johnson says he was told by Mason McClure that McClure and Nichole Hodges killed Obanion. The court documents say when Johnson was asked to go to the garage to help McClure with something, Johnson drew a gun and started shooting. McClure was shot in the back and Hodges fell away bleeding.

Officers found both dead on arrival the next day. Court documents say McClure was lying on his back with a small amount of blood pooled on the floor underneath and beside him on the left side. Hodges was across the room near the doorway to the kitchen on her right side with considerably more blood pooled.

Sunday evening Newton County authorities found Obanion’s body in a ditch in the area of State Line Road and Angus Drive. An autopsy will determine the cause of death.

At 4:30 a.m. Feb. 22, police arrested Johnson for homicide. He stands charged with two counts of first-degree murder and armed criminal action in the shooting death of McClure and Hodges. Johnson admitted to ODET officers he was getting ready to flee the state.

Detectives are still investigating. They are not looking for any other suspects at this time.

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Names released of Avilla homicide victims

Police say murders in Newton County and Avilla appear connected

AVILLA, Mo. – Police in Jasper and Newton Counties investigate separate murders Sunday night. Authorities now say both homicide cases are connected.

At around 4:10 p.m. Newton County authorities responded to the area of State Line Road and Angus Drive on a call about a possible body in the ditch. Upon arrival deputies found the body of 25-year-old Brylee Obanion. Detectives immediately began a homicide investigation. The investigation led detectives to Jasper County where they were searching for two persons of interest. It was at that point Jasper County Deputies became involved.

Jasper County authorities are investigating a double homicide in Avilla, Missouri. Deputies dispatched to 255 Greenfield St. found the bodies of a male and female. Investigators believe both to be victims of murder. Monday at 4:30 a.m., police arrested a male suspect for the murders. He is currently being held in the Jasper County Jail awaiting formal charges. There are no other suspects being sought at this time.

Authorities say both murder cases are related. Autopsies for the bodies are scheduled today. The investigations are continuing with both Newton and Jasper County Deputies working together.