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Author Archives: Kelly Wiese

Law firm to focus on complex litigation

  A national law firm bringing together former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and former U.S. Attorney Catherine Hanaway will include offices run by three other former U.S. attorneys.  Hanaway envisions the firm focusing more on complex litigation than on ...

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Hanaway reflects

When Catherine Hanaway was tapped as U.S. attorney for eastern Missouri, many people worried about having such a highly political person in charge of the law enforcement agency. But as the one-time Republican state House speaker leaves office after three years and returns to private practice, observers say she was savvy in overseeing the federal prosecutor's office. She kept experienced attorneys around, stepped back, let them do their job and didn't turn the office into a political operation. It's also how Hanaway sees her record. "I just played it straight and did the work," Hanaway said in an interview with Missouri Lawyers Weekly.

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Settlement raises choice of law questions

A husband and wife settled a medical malpractice case for $1.5 million, and how that money gets divvied up delves into choice of law doctrine that those involved say merits the attention of the legal community. Arthur Juenger hurt his ...

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Drug courts at risk

Drug courts, long a source of pride within the state’s judicial community, could be dealt a serious blow under a bill moving through the state Legislature. A little-noticed amendment to a Missouri Bar-backed bill on child custody would eliminate drug court commissioners in St. Louis and three other circuit courts and convert them into new associate circuit judgeships in other parts of the state. The legislation has already won House approval. Drug Court Commissioner James Sullivan (left) is concerned that legislation would leave drug courts without dedicated leaders with specialized training.

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Bill would update child custody laws

The Missouri Bar-supported child custody legislation seeks to update Missouri law and bring it in line with other states. The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act addresses custody disputes between parents living in different states. It strengthens the home ...

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Railroad employee awarded $1.6M in FELA suit

A man who sued the railroad he worked for after an accident won $1.6 million from a St. Louis jury. Leroy Palmer of Helena, Ark., worked as a trackman and machine operator for Union Pacific Railroad Co. In July 2005, ...

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An end to court commissioners?

A proposal moving forward in the Legislature would get rid of probate and drug court commissioners statewide starting next year and make those positions associate circuit judges. In the process, St. Louis City's circuit court would lose two drug court positions, and the court serving Kansas City would gain an associate judge. Those are just some of the judge swaps being considered under the bill. The overall legislation is aimed at rewriting the state's laws on child custody, but House Judiciary Chairman Bryan Stevenson tacked the judicial shuffling onto the bill as well.

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Collection agency to pursue red-light camera violators

St. Louis has stepped up efforts to bring in money from those cited for running red lights, hiring a collection agency to pursue violators who don't pay up. The city has hired Texas law firm Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson to pursue collection of outstanding court fines. Meanwhile, an anti-camera group led by Jesse Irwin and Ed Martin (pictured) is taking a wait-and-see approach. The group may pursue a ballot measure for a 2010 election to allow St. Louis city voters to ban use of red-light cameras.

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House OK’s Plan reform

The Missouri House narrowly passed a proposed amendment Tuesday to change how the state selects its appellate judges. The measure won initial approval by an 82-72 vote – the minimum positive votes needed to proceed. The resolution needs another vote ...

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