Belleville News-Democrat

  • Blogs

    April 11, 2012

    Hell Hole vs. Murder City: Adjectives for East St. Louis Just Get Worse

    Saturday Night Live poked some fun at East St. Louis with a political skit this past weekend that had Keenan Thompson (Good Burger, FTW), in character as ESL mayor Alvin Parks, proclaim his city to be a "hell hole." The real life Parks was reportedly not amused by the characterization.And then today ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 24, 2012

    Cahokia Teacher Files Complaint Against Three Students for "Inappropriate Sexual Contact"

    ​An unidentified female teacher at Cahokia High School filed has accused three of her students of "inappropriate sexual contact." No charges have been filed against the students yet, but they have been pulled out of school. The teacher has been put on paid administrative leave while the school dis ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2011

    Mississippi River Bridge Project Employment Disparity Stings for African American Community Hit Hard By Recession

    "I myself don't choose to be a third generation welfare mother. I want to work in the field that I'm trained in," says Dent.​Tiama Dent is a single mother of two children and a graduate of the Illinois Department of Transportation's Highway Construction Preparatory Training program. The eight-w ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 6, 2011

    Protestors Say They'll Stop Construction of Mississippi River Bridge

    Mississippi River Bridge stirs controversy.​Work on the new $700 million Mississippi River Bridge north of downtown St. Louis could come to a halt next week. East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks and the Metro-East Black Contractors Organization announced their plans for a protest on Friday, September ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 27, 2011

    Washington Park Plans to Turn Library Into -- What Else? -- a Strip Joint

    'Cause librarians are sexy, dammit!​Washington Park is home to 5,000 people and eight strip clubs. Make that nine if officials in the impoverished metro East St. Louis community pass a plan to turn the town's former library into a topless bar.The property in question is owned by Willie "Big Mack" ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 31, 2011

    Top 5 Objects Found on People Trying to Enter Madison County Courthouse

    Image via"I promise I won't use 'em on the judge. Yet."​Don Bridick just retired as director of courthouse security for the Madison County Sheriff. According to an exit interview he just did with the Belleville News-Democrat, here are five objects people had on them while trying to walk through se ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 25, 2011
  • Blogs

    April 18, 2011

    Foot Hi Pie at Blue Springs Cafe

    Robin Wheeler​Last October Gut Check staged the Great Illinois Pie Fight, with Blue Springs Cafe in Highland taking a sound beating from Mills Apple Farm in Marine. How sound was the beating? But if we ever need to gather ammunition for a pie fight, we're heading straight to Blue Springs. O ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 11, 2011

    Jury Selection Begins Today in Christopher Coleman Murder Trial

    Christopher Coleman​Attorneys representing the state of Illinois and accused murderer Christopher Coleman will begin sifting through a jury pool of 300 people in Perry County today. By the end of next week, the lawyers hope to have the twelve jurors needed to begin the trial. Coleman, 34, is accus ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 7, 2011

    More Video Emerges as Blackmon's Plaza Loses Liquor License Following Brawl

    YouTubeDozens of people skirmish around 4:30 a.m. Saturday at Blackmon's.​New video appears at end of this post.East St. Louis officials yesterday temporarily suspended the liquor license at nightclub Blackmon's Plaza following a wild fight early Saturday morning. During the fight, captured on vid ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 16, 2011

    Karaoke Singer Shot in Granite City Bar

    ​Karaoke can be insufferable. But don't blame that tone-deaf singer, blame the bar that's hosting this detestable open-mic free for all. Darrell Buettner, 52, of Pochantas, Illinois, followed that strategy and failed miserably at a tavern outside Granite City this month. Captain Brad Wells with th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 14, 2011

    Court Upholds $5 Million Sex Abuse Judgment Vs. Belleville Diocese

    ​An Illinois appellate court has upheld the ruling of a 2008 St. Clair County jury that awarded a man $5 million in a lawsuit versus the Belleville Diocese. The 2008 trial alleged that Rev. Raymond Kownacki sexually molested James Wisniewski of Champaign when Wisniewski served as an altar boy in t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 22, 2010

    East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks Tries to Be Opposite of a Grinch

    Keegan HamiltonEast St. Louis mayor Alvin Parks, Jr., at a town hall meeting earlier this year.​Whatever the opposite of a Grinch is, that's what East St. Louis mayor Alvin L. Parks, Jr., is trying to be. Upon hearing that his city was planning to lay off nineteen police officers, four public ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 28, 2010

    Dancing Transsexual and Belleville Tire-Slasher One and the Same

    Last week an anonymous evildoers slashed 33 tires in various parking lots around Belleville. Yesterday Belleville police apprehended a suspect in two of the slashings -- and it was someone very well known to Bellevillians. David L. Stone, who also goes by Susan L. Stone, has become a regular presen ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 16, 2010

    East St. Louis School Thefts Delay Start of Classes

    image viaAt Younge Middle School in East St. Louis, it's still summer vacation.​Last week the Belleville News-Democrat reported that over the course of the last school year, more than $1 million worth of electronic equipment was stolen from East St. Louis schools. However, District 189 officia ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 27, 2010

    Those Dirty Dogs! Collinsville Burglars Mark Their Territory

    image viaThe writing on the wall.​Not content with merely stealing electronics and jewelry, the burglars who broke into a Collinsville home last Wednesday, July 21, decided to mark their territory. They used red spray paint, which is not the easiest to remove, but definitely smells better than ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 2, 2010

    Washington Park's Mobil Gas Station of Death

    Those gas prices are killer!​Running on empty in southern Illinois? You might want to avoid filling up at the Mobil station on Kingshighway in Washington Park.After yet another homicide in the gritty East St. Louis suburb, the village's police chief told the Belleville News-Democrat that police "a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 29, 2010

    Tuesday Tussle, Part 2: Supreme Court's Gun Ban Ruling Will Not Lead to More Bloodshed

    ​The Supreme Court yesterday ruled that state and local laws can not supersede the Constitution when it comes to Americans' right to keep arms.The decision throws out laws in Chicago and its suburban neighbor, Oak Park, that banned residents from keeping handguns in their homes. The ruling also o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 25, 2010

    Shocking Number of Fugitives Hiding in East St. Louis Nursing Homes

    Don't get burgled, grandma!​In a sweep called "Operation Guardian," the state of Illinois is ferreting out wanted criminals blending in among nursing home populations. The Belleville News-Democrat just ran a story on their raid in Metro East, and in Daily RFT's opinion, that newspaper buried the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 22, 2010

    Would-be Burglar Gets Tackled, Pinned and Generally Humiliated by High School Footballer

    Image via"Nobody robs a store in MY town!"​Hey burglars, next time you burglarize in small-town America, make sure no enormous high school football linemen are watching.Reports The Belleville News-Democrat: At about 1:15 a.m. Saturday, Roger Farmer  -- an 18-year-old member of the Wesclin Hig ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 4, 2010

    Heard the One About the Shoplifting Priest With A Tombstone and Shackles in the Rectory?

    Image via Rev. Steven Poole​Just when you think the reputation of Catholic priests couldn't be tarnished any further, a reverend from Illinois gets caught shoplifting and decorating his living space with a bizarre assortment of items.How bizarre you ask? Like gravestones, shackles a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 3, 2010

    Marcus Blue & Jeremy Davis: East St. Louis Homicides No. 8 & 9; Shot During Memorial Day Domestic Disputes

    Marcus Blue, a 23-year-old from Belleville, was shot to death Tuesday night at 1235 Boisemenue Ave, in East St. Louis. View Larger MapPolice were called to the residence at 12:48 a.m. when Blue attempted to enter the home, which belonged to his ex-girlfriend. Her new boyfriend, another 23-year-old ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 25, 2010

    UPDATED: Christopher Coleman's Illinois Home/Murder Scene Up for Auction This Afternoon

    Chris Coleman's home is up for auction. Crime scene tape not included.​UPDATE 2:21 p.m.: According to Diane Sendelbeck, Monroe County's deputy court clerk, the Coleman casa sold for $256,419.96.The buyer? Wells Fargo Bank.Sendelbeck said nobody from the public bid on the house."Channel 2 and 4 and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 20, 2010

    St. Louis Cardinals Twitter Accounts You Should Follow

    ​Keep up on the latest 140-character bursts of news, humor and statistics related to the St. Louis Cardinals on Twitter with this list of accounts you should follow, curated by the RFT staff. The tweeters below are all real people with opinions and we've excluded those Twitter accounts that simply ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 10, 2010

    Serious Weight: Dealer Sentenced for Moving 8.5 Tons of Pot Over 5 Years

    So, exactly how much is 8.5 tons of pot? Obligatory photograph of pot.Answer: 17,000 pounds or 7,711 kilograms or 103 Michael Phelpses or 38,555 copies of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon or 453,592 Twinkies or 131,949 White Castle Sliders. That's how much mary jane an East St. Louis drug de ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 6, 2010

    Aaron Jackson: Washington Park Murder Suspect Arrested

    Aaron "Chill" Jackson​The man suspected of shooting to death Washington Park Mayor John Thornton last month was arrested yesterday in a Metro East hotel. The police chief in the tiny municipality of Alorton got a tip yesterday that Aaron Jackson -- on the lam since early April -- was staying at a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 26, 2010

    East St. Louis Schools Make Consultants Cash Money Millionaires

    Image viaThe motto of East St. Louis School District 189?​It's never a good sign when a public agency refuses to turn over financial information for a newspaper's public records request. Logic says if there's nothing to hide, then why not hand over the data as required by law?Since East St. Louis ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 22, 2010

    Woman Kidnapped from Kansas City, Saved at Metro East McDonald's

    A likely suspect.​I'm guessing it was the Hamburglar and perhaps Grimus, too. Though police have yet to name the two male suspects arrested for kidnapping a woman from Kansas City on Tuesday and driving her to a McDonald's in Fairview Heights, Illinois. As the Belleville News-Democrat reports this ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 1, 2010

    City Nights: Secretive Construction on Murder Site Lends Itself to Conspiracy

    What's he building in there? I'll tell you one thing, he's not building a playhouse for the children.What's he building in there? -- Tom WaitsCity Nights as it appeared before a fire last December.​Remember the story of the City Nights, the supposedly racist strip club in East St. Louis where a bl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 1, 2010

    Pink Handcuffs Can't Hold Brooklyn Man Arrested For Burning Rubber

    Image ViaCops love donuts but not this kind.​Just when you think crime and punishment in the metro east suburbs can't get anymore absurd (Taco Bell police chase, anyone?) a guy goes and escapes from the pink handcuffs of a female Brooklyn police officer.A 23-year-old man -- police declined to name ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 17, 2010

    Pro Tip: When Stealing Heavy Equipment, Cover Up the Footprints in the Snow That Lead To Your Front Door

    Image Via The oldest blunder in the book?​Teenagers are capable of many less-than-intelligent deeds, but a trio of eighteen-year-olds from Godfrey, Illinois, may have set a new standard for brainless bumbling earlier this week.Early Monday morning, the Belleville News-Democrat reported  ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 15, 2010

    The Best Video of a Meth Addict Jumping Into A Frozen Pond You'll See Today

    Image via National Geographic A suspected Madison County meth maker took a polar bear plunge while attempting to elude police​Ahhh, methamphetamine. It makes human beings do some amazing things -- amazingly dumb things.Take the case of 50-year-old Robert C. Kelly of Madison County, Illinois ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 9, 2010

    House of Horrors: Bank Forecloses on Chris Coleman's Home

    Image Via Nevermind the blood stains, it's a bargain! Attention home buyers: Great bargain available.  Don't hesitate; this offer won't last long:Asking Estimated price: $170, 000Address: 2854 Robert Drive, Columbia, Illinois 62236Amenities: Three bedrooms, garage, 11,760 square-foot lot ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 26, 2010

    Illinois Proposes Law to Prevent Labor Lockouts At Fairmount Park

    Horse racing fans celebrated yesterday like a gambler who just hit the daily double. A last-minute deal was reached to allow Fairmount Park to host 52 days of live racing in 2010, as opposed to the three days the track was stuck with after a prolonged labor dispute.It's not exactly a full schedule ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 4, 2009

    Chris Coleman's Attorneys Apparently Lack Internet Access

    WWMD?​We're not lawyers here at Daily RFT, but we occasionally like to play attorneys on the Internetz. (In this imaginary world we always think of ourselves as Matlock. Please humor us in this request.) So, today we're scratching our silky white coif and nervously fraying the lapels of our seersu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 4, 2009

    Today In Pathetic Criminal Defense: Dimwit Robbers, Angry Drug Dealers, and Murder Dog Magazine

    Image via​In America's justice system, sometimes the innocent are proven guilty, sometimes the guilty are found innocent, and sometimes the guilty are so monumentally stupid that they defy all logic and common sense and make you wish for the ability to skip the trial completely a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 23, 2009

    The Justice System is On Crack

    Image Via​In the '80s, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin thought he was leading the charge in the war on drugs. He advocated significantly stiffer sentences for possession of crack than for powder cocaine -- to the point that, to this day, it still takes 100 times as much powdered booger sugar to trigg ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 13, 2009

    Rap Lyrics or Deranged Terrorist Threat? You Decide!

    An Illinois judge is left to fill in the blanks.​Not that rap lyrics are required to rhyme, but we here at Daily RFT are having the darndest time imagining the following sentence as musical verse: If this account doesn't reach $50,000 in the next 7 days then a murderous rampage similar to the VT s ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 9, 2009

    The Big Bloody: Melee At Brooklyn's Bottoms Up Strip Club

    A strip joint, a late-night shooting, at least 30 shell casings recovered, three weapons five arrests, and one man hospitalized: Was Adam "Pacman" Jones in town Saturday this weekend?Yes, the Belleville News-Democrat is reporting yet another shooting incident at a Brooklyn, Illinois strip club, this ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 5, 2009

    Trouble at the Chili Cook-Off? An AK-47 Ought To Clear That Up

    Image Via​So you're at the chili cook-off in Belleville, simmering a pot of the ol' extra-spicy secret recipe when some poseur gourmand comes along and disses your batch, calls it weak sauce. Now you have two options: A. Shrug it off, be the bigger man, and let the beans speak for themselves OR... ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 14, 2009

    Latest Panacea for Fairmount Park: Internet Gambling

    ​After trying for years to get slot machines at tracks, the Illinois horse-racing community is hoping the next-best thing will help the troubled industry. Yesterday the Illinois Racing Board legalized online gambling for horse racing. As the Belleville News-Democrat reports this morning, the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 14, 2009

    There Must Be Something In the Music at Alton High School

    Thanks to dozens of pun-filled Fark headlines a day about America's high school teachers schtuping their students, the world is fairly desensitized to the unfortunate (unless it's the cheerleading coach) phenomenon of inappropriate teacher-teen relationships.So when the Belleville News-Democrat repo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 5, 2009

    Another Lawnmower DUI; Illinois Drunk Drives Cub Cadet to Store for Milwaukee's Best

    bnd.comDennis Cretton​Yesterday we speculated that driving lawnmowers while intoxicated was a recreation sport unique to Missouri. We were wrong. Drunk lawnmowering (that a word?) seems to be a favorite pastime of inebriates everywhere -- particularly those who've lost their drivers license from a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 16, 2009

    Would You Notice If Someone Shot You In the Head?

    A man from Belleville didn't, and apparently that's not entirely uncommon. From the Belleville News-Democrat:BELLEVILLE -- A doctor said Thursday it's possible for a person to get shot with a small-caliber bullet and not know it.That's what apparently happened to Robert Bunn Sr., 69, who was found d ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 12, 2009

    Scandal At East St. Louis' Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center?

    Sure sounds like it after reading this huge story in yesterday's Belleville News-Democrat:"A financially troubled charitable foundation headed by Olympic star Jackie Joyner-Kersee paid at least $457,000 in consulting fees to her husband's private foundation, which failed to file federal income state ... More >>

  • Dining

    August 22, 2007

    Smoked Catfish

    $7.95 Per Pound
    Jay International Foods Company
    3172 S. Grand Blvd.

  • News

    February 22, 2006

    Hair Shirt

    Revealed! The diary of a traumatized Shih Tzu, a local blogger's bedroom confessions and the wherefores of wearing human hair! Plus, the triumphant (and drunken) return of Charles Bearkowski.

  • News

    June 1, 2005


    Week of June 1, 2005

  • Calendar

    September 1, 2004

    Gimme Some Skin

    Takashi Horisaki strips down

  • News

    May 28, 2003

    Gavel Rousing

    RFT staff writer Geri L. Dreiling makes a strong case before the Bar Association of St. Louis

  • More >>