Eager for change in how the St. Louis Circuit Court handles gun crimes — and impatient with the pace of the judges considering it — Mayor Francis Slay’s administration has prepared to force the issue by taking its plan to the Legislature and Missouri Supreme Court.
But on the eve of announcing the proposal, and after a meeting Wednesday with judges who were caught by surprise, a top Slay aide agreed to scale back the approach until there is consensus. One concern voiced at the meeting was that Slay’s team was trying to sidestep the judges.
The plan is to significantly restructure the way gun cases pass through the courts, putting all weapons charges before just two judges assigned to an “Armed Offender Docket.” Currently, such crimes are mixed with other felonies and could be assigned to a variety of judges.
(Hat tip to Mark Sletten)