This weeks heavy rains closed a lot of area roads, but also forced a delay in the start of a major construction project on I-44 that was supposed to start tomorrow. The Missouri Department of Transportation’s decided to push the project’s start date back to May 2nd. The work will require the shut down of the westbound lanes from St. Robert Exit 159 through Waynesville Exit 156 ending at Buckhorn Exit 153. MoDOT says the changed start date won’t through the 2nd phase of the IU-44 project off…it’s still on schedule. They expect the work will take 20-days from start to finish. The construction project is replacing multiple layers of asphalt overlays with eight inches of concrete.
Table Rock Lake should crest some time today according to Officials with Table Rock Lake and the Army Corps of Engineers. Projections released this morning have Table Rock topping out at 935.50 feet above sea level. That beats the old record beating it by more than 2 feet that was set back in 2008. Hydro Engineers from the Corps will be site 24 hours a day.
A Linn woman has pleaded not guilty in the death of her 2-month-old son after the boy drowned in a bathtub. Twenty-eight-year-old Rachel Sweet waived her right to a preliminary hearing and was bound over for trial on charges of endangering the welfare of a child and involuntary manslaughter. Cooper Bentley Sweet, was left alone in the bath according to prosecutors. That led to his death in March. An autopsy determined the boy drowned.
U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill will make trips today to areas hit hardest by the recent string of natural disasters that have torn through Missouri. McCaskill will travel to Poplar Bluff to visit areas deeply impacted by the severe flooding. McCaskill intends to thank volunteers and community members working around the clock to bring people to safety and prevent further damage to the area. She will hold a short press availability at the Black River Coliseum at 2:45 PM CT where she will give updates from her visit.
As waters continue to rise in Southeast Missouri and thousands of people are evacuated from their homes, U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill made the following statement about the flooding and a plan being considered by the Army Corps of Engineers to intentionally breach the Bird’s Point Levee in an attempt to direct flood waters.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families whose lives have been affected by the tragic flooding in Southeast Missouri. I know that Missourians will come together to help our communities, neighborhoods, homes and people recover,” said McCaskill.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates that an intentional breach would destroy more than 130,000 acres of prime farmland, which could jeopardize the livelihood of countless Missouri families, along with the broader farm economy. McCaskill has already communicated her concerns with Army Corps of Engineers’ leadership.
City Administrator Brenda Colter wants Camdenton to go green. She asked the Camdenton Board of Alderman if she could make the city’s quarterly newsletter online only. They approved. The city will save printing costs. If you’d like to receive the newsletter, electronically, sign up at Camdentoncity.com.
The bench trial for an Ozark County murder continues in Laclede County. The defense spent most of the first day trying to have the prosecutor’s key witness removed. 30 year old Jesus Sesena Murrieta is charged with second degree murder. Bradley Deweese was scheduled to testify that he saw Sesena Murrieta shoot 22 year old Alonzo Foster Junior in 2008 near Mammoth. Defense attorneys argued the testimony should be thrown out and the murder charge reduced to manslaughter.