Farewell to 2023: a recap of Missouri’s top news stories

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ST. LOUIS — As the year 2023 comes to a close, it’s time to think about the important news stories that changed Missouri’s story. These stories are about a lot of different things, from lawsuits to the weather to the complexities of regular life. Let’s look at the most interesting stories that kept people watching.

Teacher’s shooting incident sparks dispute:

Abby Zwerner, a first-grade teacher, faced a tragic shooting incident, sparking a dispute over whether she was terminated or resigned from Newport News Public Schools. Financial and legal challenges ensued, intensifying with a $40 million lawsuit against the school board, placing Zwerner under pressure.

Former ‘basketball wives’ star’s sentencing:

Brittish Cierrah Williams, a former ‘Basketball Wives’ cast member, received a four-year prison sentence for her involvement in various schemes, including tax fraud and pandemic-related scams. Williams pleaded guilty to 15 felonies, acknowledging the gravity of her actions and facing both prison time and restitution.

Graduation ceremony turmoil in St. Louis county:

Eighth-grade graduation at Westview Middle School in St. Louis County turned into a frustrating ordeal for parents as their children were turned away. The Riverview Gardens School District defended its decision, citing adherence to policies, leading to a dialogue on the importance of policy adherence and effective communication.

Tragedy strikes after grooming session:

A Missouri family calls for accountability as their dog, Ladybird, succumbs to injuries sustained during a grooming session at a truck stop. The incident sheds light on the lack of regulations in Missouri’s grooming industry, emphasizing the need for standards to ensure the safety of pets during grooming.

Revelations in a 2009 murder case:

A shocking 2009 murder in Columbia, Illinois, unravels the secret life of an Illinois man, leading to the strangulation of his wife and two sons. Threatening emails and Sheri Coleman’s premonition set the stage for suspicion, eventually resulting in the arrest of Chris Coleman on three counts of first-degree murder.

Walmart billing issues:

Walmart customers in Missouri voice complaints about double charges, prompting the retailer to address billing issues caused by a technical glitch. Walmart acknowledges the problem and assures customers that corrections have been made for all impacted transactions.

New laws take effect in Missouri:

Five new laws take effect in Missouri, impacting areas such as gender-affirming care for minors, transgender athlete participation, and hands-free driving. These legislative changes reflect the evolving legal landscape in the state.

Insights into Missouri living according to non-locals:

Non-Missourians share observations on the peculiarities of living in the Show Me State, including regional cuisine challenges, pronunciation differences, and early store closures.

Woman’s disappearance raises concerns:

Jacquelyn “Jacque” Elizabeth Mitchell, a St. Charles woman, goes missing, leaving her family and friends concerned. Her abandoned car is found in a Maryland Heights apartment complex, but her whereabouts remain unknown.

Chateau Pensmore: a 14-year construction saga:

A massive 72,000-square-foot Missouri mansion, Chateau Pensmore, becomes one of the largest homes in America after 14 years of construction. Steven Huff is the project’s leader, but there are delays, legal issues, and ongoing uncertainty about its completion date.

Mindset coach with a one million-dollar price tag:

Marysol Uribe, a 28-year-old mindset coach, gains attention for offering coaching services with a one million-dollar price tag. Uribe’s unique approach to personal transformation and her foundation aim to make a lasting impact.

Anheuser-Busch controversy and changes:

Anheuser-Busch’s distributors meet in St. Louis to discuss recovery plans following the Bud Light transgender controversy. Major changes in marketing structure are announced, emphasizing employee welfare and streamlining marketing functions.

Dispute over towing practices in Jennings:

A Jennings man blocks his vehicle’s tow, claiming it’s for expired tags, highlighting a dispute over towing practices. The incident raises questions about vehicle ownership and the city’s towing policies.

City tows cars for expired tags:

A Missouri city tows cars with expired temporary tags from driveways, leaving a mother without her vehicle. The towing sparks a debate on the appropriateness of towing based on expired tags and its implications on city codes.

License plate rejections in Missouri:

The state of Missouri rejects nearly 500 vanity or personalized license plates in 2022 due to obscenity, profanity, or offensive content. Legal grounds for rejections are outlined, with examples reflecting a range of creative and controversial expressions.

Mike Shildt’s departure revisited:

Former Cardinals manager Mike Shildt’s departure and comments are revisited as the team faces challenges in the 2023 season. Criticism of the team’s performance under new manager Oli Marmol leads to discussions about the impact of Shildt’s departure.

Winter storm anticipation in St. Louis:

Anticipation builds for a winter storm in St. Louis, with details on potential snowfall and its impact on roads. Unusual warmth in January gives way to predictions of a significant winter weather comeback, raising concerns about accumulating snow and cold air.

Rescue of Shih Tzus from breeder:

An animal shelter in Pacific, Missouri, rescues 27 Shih Tzus from a breeder, seeking foster homes for the dogs. The urgent call for fosters emphasizes the thorough fostering process, including health assessments and face-to-face meetings.

Fox 2 photographer incident in Hillsdale:

A Fox 2 photographer is run over after a community threatens to tow cars, leading to the arrest of a Hillsdale employee. The incident prompts investigations into tow warnings and the alleged involvement of Hillsdale’s mayor.

Online shopping’s impact on traditional malls:

Online shopping contributes to the decline of traditional malls in the St. Louis area, with seven spots no longer serving as malls. Crestwood Court, Crossings at Northwest, and Jamestown Mall undergo changes, reflecting the evolving retail landscape.

These stories show the wide range of important events that have happened in Missouri and will continue to shape the state’s history in 2023.

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