APRIL 11, 2014



SEARCH ENDED FOR MISSING MEN A search for two men who have been missing since a barge overturned earlier this week has been called off.

Officials announced Thursday that the search has been suspended. Juan Nieves and Nicolas Perez have been missing since Tuesday after falling into the Mississippi River near Blytheville.

  35TH ANNUAL MERCHANT SHOWCASE SCHEDULED FOR APRIL 26TH The 35th annual Merchant Showcase will be held on April 26th at Three Rivers College.

The Merchant Showcase gives local businesses and vendors an opportunity to showcase their services to the public. Participating businesses will have booths set up in the Bess Gym for giveaways, demonstrations, contests, and more.

There will also be the opportunity for visitors to win one of four cash giveaways. The Merchant Showcase will be held from 10 am to 3 pm on April 26th. Admission is $1.

  TEACHER CITED WITH MISDEMEANOR SECOND DEGREE ASSAULT IN NORTHEAST ARKANSAS A Jonesboro teacher has been cited with misdemeanor second degree assault after allegedly dragging a 9 year old student to class by the ankles.

According to KAIT, 59 year old Linda Stephens has been placed on administrative leave following the incident on March 31st at the Microsociety Magnet School.

According to the report, the special needs student had been refusing to go to class and had fallen in the school’s hall. Stephens then allegedly grabbed the student’s legs and pulled him to the classroom.

  GOLF TOURNAMENT TO BE HELD TO RAISE MONEY FOR THE POPLAR BLUFF PUBLIC SCHOOL FOUNDATION The Poplar Bluff Public School Foundation is sponsoring the annual Four Person Scramble Golf Classic in early May.

The tournament will be held Friday, May 2nd at the Ozark Ridge Golf Course. Proceeds from the tournament will go toward the foundation scholarship fund and other educational opportunities.

Teams and hole sponsors are needed, according to Poplar Bluff school superintendent Chris Hon. Lunch and evening meals will also be provided.

The tournament will be limited to the first 20 teams to enter. For more information, call the Poplar Bluff Superintendent office at 785-7751.

  POPLAR BLUFF MAN ARRESTED ON METH AND MARIJUANA CHARGE A Poplar Bluff man is facing drug charges following his arrest Wednesday night.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, 47 year old Craig E. Lee was arrested shortly after 10 pm Friday in Butler County on charges of possession of less than 35 grams of marijuana, felony possession of a controlled substance – methamphetamine, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

  MACHINERY TAKEN FROM JONESBORO BUSINESS Jonesboro police are looking for more information on a piece of machinery that was reportedly stolen from an area business.

According to authorities, a 2006 Caterpillar skid steer was taken from CWC Mechanical. A portion of a chain link fence was knocked down as the machinery was taken.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call 870-935-5657.

  BILL WOULD LIMIT DISCIPLINE FOR TOY GUNS Missouri students could use food, pencils or their hands to imitate a gun without penalty under legislation endorsed by the state House.

The bill advanced Wednesday would shield students from discipline of fines for "simulating a weapon while playing."

Sponsoring Republican Representative Mike Kelley, of Lamar, says he was motivated by the Maryland case of a Baltimore second-grader suspended last year for chewing a Pop-Tart into the shape of a gun.

Opponents say the legislation could allow some students to encourage violence among their peers.

The measure would allow students to be disciplined for causing bodily harm, disrupting a learning environment or creating a serious threat. It needs one more vote before moving to the Senate.

  EXPANSION OF SELF DEFENSE LAW APPROVED BY MISSOURI HOUSE The Missouri House has approved legislation expanding a self-defense law against home intruders.

A so-called "castle doctrine" law approved in 2007 gives Missourians a right to defend themselves and their property. The law says that people can use deadly force to stop an intruder in a home or vehicle. There is no duty to retreat if someone enters illegally.

The measure passed by the House with a 110 to 39 vote on Thursday would extend that right to people on a property with the owner's consent. Current law applies only to the owner or tenant of a location.

The legislation now heads to the Senate.

  GOVERNOR NIXON WITHHOLDING FUNDS FROM EDUCATION BUDGET Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is withholding funds from the current fiscal year's education budget because he says lawmakers didn't approve enough money in their mid-year spending plan.

Nixon requested $44 million in January to make up for declining revenue in gambling and lottery money. But in the legislation passed this week, lawmakers only approved half that amount, saying they didn't know if all the money would be necessary.

As a result, Nixon said Thursday he is restricting $6.4 million in spending divided equally between community colleges and four-year universities, plus $15.6 million for K-12 schools. He is also calling on lawmakers to put additional money in next year's budget to make up for the shortfall.

The current fiscal year started last July and ends on June 30.