Support Local Journalism. Donate to Riverfront Times.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Wesley Bell Takes Down Bob McCulloch in Prosecutor's Race

Posted By on Tue, Aug 7, 2018 at 10:54 PM

click to enlarge Wesley Bell. - DANNY WICENTOWSKI
  • DANNY WICENTOWSKI
  • Wesley Bell.

Bob McCulloch, the longtime St. Louis County prosecuting attorney who became a progressive target for his handling of a police shooting in Ferguson, has lost his seat.

In a massive upset, Democratic Party voters showed McCulloch the door tonight, voting for challenger Wesley Bell 54.9 to 45 percent, with 89 percent of precincts reporting.

That margin is significant enough that Bell declared victory around 10:30 p.m. — and McCulloch gave a speech acknowledging "not much is going to change" in an apparent concession about twenty minutes later.



Since he faces no real Republican opposition, Bell is seemingly assured a new job as the county's top prosecutor.

McCulloch led a grand jury investigation into the actions of Ferguson officer Darren Wilson, who'd shot a teenaged Michael Brown, only to produce a no-bill. Tonight was his first election since those events in Ferguson in 2014, as he aimed for an eighth term as the county's top prosecutor.

But in addition to an energized electorate, he faced an onslaught of opposition from progressive groups, including the ACLU, which sought to "educate" voters about his race. In interviews with TV reporters earlier tonight from his watch party at the Village Bar, McCulloch accused the ACLU of "trying to buy this election."

Bell certainly got a big push from the national groups' support. A 43-year-old Ferguson resident, he has worked as a public defender, a judge for Velda City's municipal court, a part-time prosecutor in Riverview and the city attorney for Wellston. He was elected to the Ferguson City Council in 2015.

If elected, he has pledged to end cash bail and institute other reforms.

St. Louis County saw high turnout in tonight's primary. More than 35 percent of registered voters turned out.

Editor's note: A previous version of this story contained inaccurate information about turnout. We regret the error.

We welcome tips and feedback. Email the author at sarah.fenske@riverfronttimes.com

We’re keeping you informed…
...and it’s what we love to do. From local politics and culture to national news that hits close to home, Riverfront Times has been keeping St. Louis informed for years.

It’s never been more important to support local news sources. A free press means accountability and a well-informed public, and we want to keep our unique and independent reporting available for many, many years to come.

If quality journalism is important to you, please consider a donation to Riverfront Times. Every reader contribution is valuable and so appreciated, and goes directly to support our coverage of critical issues and neighborhood culture. Thank you.

Read the Digital Print Issue

April 1, 2020

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2020 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation