Saturday, December 30, 2017

Nancy Hughes: Dare to be bold

“Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly
make known the mystery of the gospel.”
Ephesians 6:19 (NIV)

My granddaughter Lola B. taught me a great lesson on being bold when she was in the second grade. Her sister Ava, who was a first grader, was being bullied by another student. Ava, who was very shy, had tried unsuccessfully to get the girl to stop her behavior but it continued.

So Lola, who loved Ava very much, decided at 7 years old to help her 6 year old sister out.

Digging deep inside for courage, Lola walked up to the girl as she stood in the hallway with a friend. “I am Ava’s older sister and I understand that you have been bullying her. It needs to stop right now and I am going to tell your teacher about it.”

The girl looked a bit surprised but quickly nodded “okay.”

Then Lola went to Ava’s classroom and found her teacher. “Hi. I am Lola, Ava’s older sister. I want you to know what is going on with Ava being bullied. And I want to let you know that I will be speaking to my mother about this.” Mercy.
Oh to have the courage to be bold! That is something that I certainly need when I want to share Jesus. Can you relate?

The Scripture in Ephesians 6:19 speaks directly to that. Paul says “Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel.”

Why am I not bold when sharing what the Lord has done in my life? Why can’t I tell others about His goodness and mercy and forgiveness and hope?

Honestly, I cannot come up with a good reason. Only excuses.

Like, I’m afraid the person won’t like me anymore and no longer be my friend. Or, I think they will look at my life and all my flaws and failures and see me as a hypocrite. And, maybe I will say the wrong words. Good grief!

Paul wrote this passage as he sat in prison. In prison and thinking of how to share Jesus! And I can’t share because I am afraid that someone won’t like me? Shame on me.

Can I tell you that the bullying stopped? It did. All because of the boldness of a 7 year old little girl who loved her sister very much and was not afraid to speak truth.

How much more can we do to speak the name of Jesus in love and share the hope He gives to us all. Dare to be bold!

Father, please help me to share your hope through Jesus with love and courage. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

R.A.P. it up . . .


Can you think of a time when the Lord nudged you to share His love and mercy with someone but you hesitated because of one of the above excuses?


Journal the names of five people in your life who need to know about the love and forgiveness of Jesus.

Beside each name write your excuse or reason for not yet sharing Him.

Pray over each name, asking the Lord to give you courage and boldness in love to speak to them. Then do that this week. Journal the result.

Power Verses

Ephesians 6:19 (NIV) “Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel.”

Acts 4:29 (NIV) “Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.”

Joshua 1:9 (NIV) “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Acts 28:31 (NIV) “Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Matthew 28:19 (NIV) “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit . . .”

(For more of Nancy Hughes' writing and information about her books, check out her blog, Encouragement from the War Room.)

David G. Hargroder: Some thoughts about music, good and bad

I’ll be 100% honest, my favorite type of music is hardcore gangster rap. I was actually just informed the other day that I am a fan of “Trap Music.”

The next generation is a very knowledgeable group. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love all music. I will tap my foot and bob my head to just about any genre of music; however, it takes Lil’ Wayne, Lil Boosie, or Machine Gun Kelly to get my day started. I usually mellow out during lunch to a little Drake or Young Gerald. And if we’re being honest, I tend to close the day on a 2pac and Eminem note. That type of music just resonates with my mentality when it comes to conquering the day.

So, what if your favorite type of music is Country? What about Death Metal? Maybe a little light rock helps you melt the day’s stress away.

On the flip side, I wonder how many people go through the holiday season wanting to rip their hair out every time a Christmas song comes on? Despite the genre you feel most connected (or disconnected) to there is one undeniable fact, music influences us to our very core. 

In both times of good and times of bad most of us turn to music to either celebrate or get through the rough time. We use music as a tool to give praise, to party, to grieve; it’s almost like, we all really do have a personal soundtrack to our life. It took me several years to be able to answer the question, “If ever met with the unfortunate dilemma of deciding whether I would I rather be blind or deaf what would I choose?” At this point in my life I have to say I’d take being blind over deaf. I just love music that much.

Recent biomedical research has shown that music and rhythm affects multiple areas of the brain simultaneously, and the brain that engages in music is actually changed by that engagement. The research also shows that music is actually capable of building new neural connections in the brain through experience and exposure, thus improving the brain’s ability to “rewire” itself after trauma or injury. This rehabilitative phenomena, known as Neurological Music Therapy (NMT) has allowed certain individuals to lead more productive lives following their injury.

This type of therapy has been shown to be extremely effective in the treatment of PTSD suffered by our military veterans and active duty service members. 

NMT has become a recognized treatment option by departments such as: Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense, Department of Health and Human Services, and the National Intrepid Center of Excellence. The recognition garnered by this therapy has led to the development of The Center for American Military Music Opportunities (CAMMO.) This organization has a very simple two-pronged approach. First, to create music-based therapeutic programming and outlets for service members, veterans and family members. Secondly, to train and educate service members, veterans, and their families in music career opportunities including artist development.

What about the negative impacts of music? Sure, it can be a great therapy for many but recent studies also show that music can have a negative affect on human behavior and rational cognitive reasoning. The vast majority of studies conclude that these negative impacts are far more prevalent among adolescents and teenagers than adults. Under the educated assumption that these studies are accurate, it is important to understand the correlation between childhood development and the role choice of music plays in the development of today’s youth.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, “adolescents’ choice of music and their reactions to and interpretations of it vary with age, culture, and ethnicity. Research has even shown that there is also a difference in these variables between genders. 

While female adolescents are more likely to use music to reflect their emotional state, in particular when experiencing feelings of loneliness or feeling “down,” male adolescents are more likely to use music as a tool to stimulant their energy level, or to create a more positive image of themselves.”

I’m no pediatric psychologist, but I would speculate that the gender variable stays constant throughout life. This isn’t to suggest that women don’t use music to get pumped up just as much as men do when we’re feeling lonely. It’s merely a statistical probability that men and women will react in some form or fashion consistent with the gender role in which he or she identifies.

Listening to your favorite music, for most, is the best way to coast through the day. While it’s true that we are constantly influenced by our surroundings, I believe it is especially true that you are influenced by the music you listen to. My philosophy on the matter, rock on, live and let live, and let the pieces settle where they may. Party on party people.

(David G. Hargroder is a Webb City resident.)

Links posted to top Turner Report/Inside Joplin posts for the week

Two crimes dominated the top posts on the Turner Report and Inside Joplin this week.

Five of the top 10 Turner Report posts concerned the investigation into the murder of three-year-old Jayda Kyle of Carl Junction, while the Christmas Eve murder of Sean Harris of Joplin is featured twice on the Turner Report list and three times on Inside Joplin.

Other top stories included the news that a Dairy Queen may be coming to 32nd Street, Joplin's City Clerk is retiring after 20 years, 20th and Main is going to be closed for six weeks, and three children were killed in an accident on MO 86.

The top Inside Joplin post most likely reached that status because of its headline. The story involved the Sarcoxie Police Department's arrest of a couple on drug charges, but during a search at the jail, a Jasper County deputy "found ecstasy in man's pants."

The Turner Report

1. Some thoughts on the Joplin Globe's article on the Jayda Kyle murder investigation

2. Suspect in Joplin murder charged with shooting another man in 2015, other suspect brutally beat girlfriend

3. Public defender to represent accused Jayda Kyle killer at Wednesday hearing

4. Probable cause: Joplin man accused of Christmas Eve murder believed victim was having sex with his girlfriend

5. Joplin City Council expected to approve plan to build Dairy Queen on 32nd Street

6. Children's Division documents: Grandfather attempting to manipulate Jayda Kyle murder investigation

7. Sentencing date set for Jarub Baird on meth conspiracy, money laundering charges

8. Preliminary hearing for accused killer of Jayda Kyle set for February 1

9. Jasper County Sheriff; We are still investigating Jayda Kyle murder

10. Joplin City Clerk retiring after 20 years on the job

Inside Joplin

1. Sarcoxie traffic stop leads to drug arrest for couple, Jasper County deputy finds ecstasy in man's pants

2. 20th Street to close at Main for six weeks

3. JPD arrests 21-year-old for threatening to kill father, doing considerable damage to home, shooting gun from his mother's car

4. Highway Patrol Arrests December 29-30

5. Joplin man shot to death on Christmas Eve, another gunshot victim hospitalized

6. Three Neosho children killed, six other people injured in three-vehicle crash on 86

7. Joplin men charged with first degree murder, suspects still at large

8. Joplin man killed in accident in Webb City

9. Joplin Police Department Arrests December 26-27

10. Joplin murder suspect arrested, second suspect still at large

Inside Joplin Obituaries

1. Erik, Benjamin and Isaac Verde

2. Chris Loch

3. Chanler Wood

4. Alane Dale

5. Clarissa Slaten

6. Donna Martin

7. Ivy Wardlaw

8. Jim West

9. Jackie Soma

10. Daven Divine

Greitens campaign: We fought the liberal media, bureaucrats and insiders- now give us money

In a final 2017 plea for campaign contributions, Gov. Eric Greitens sounded the usual notes of achieving success "no matter what the liberal media said."

Whatever insiders and bureaucrats did, the message said, "we did different."

The message fails to mention anything specific Greitens has done in his first year as governor.

The message is printed below (minus the links to give contributions and the mention that they have looked over their records and discovered I have not made any contributions in 2017).

We did a lot of good for the people of Missouri this year. Most importantly, we kept our promises. No matter what the liberal media said, no matter what the insiders and bureaucrats did, we did different.

We couldn't have done that without your help and support. The fight isn't over. We've got a lot left to do to grow more jobs with higher pay, keep our streets safe, and improve schools for the people of Missouri.

As the year come to a close, we're looking at our donor records. We wanted you to see what you've given this year—and we wanted to make one final ask of you:

This is your final chance to be on the list of our 2017 Supporters and to update your donor record. Click one of our quick donate links below to ensure your name is on the list.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Big work in store in 2018 for Billy Long's committees

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

The Energy and Commerce Committee, which I am a member of, recently celebrated its 222nd birthday. With a jurisdiction that covers a variety of issues, including health, energy, digital commerce and consumer protection, communications and technology and environment, the Energy and Commerce Committee has a successful track record. This year the Energy and Commerce Committee had six bills signed into law, 58 bills pass the House of Representatives, 92 hearings and 18 markups. Of the 58 bills that passed the House, 86 percent received bipartisan support. I have the privilege of serving on three of the subcommittees: Health, Energy and Communications and Technology.

One of the top priorities for the Communications and Technology Subcommittee is expanding access to rural broadband deployment. As someone who represents a predominantly rural district, this issue hits close to home. According to the Federal Communications Commission 2016 Broadband Progress Report, 61 percent of Missouri’s rural population cannot access fixed broadband Internet. That’s unacceptable. In March, the subcommittee discussed two possible bills that would help close this digital divide by including rural broadband deployment in certain federally-funded highway projects.

Although the Communications and Technology Subcommittee is doing impactful work, it isn’t the only subcommittee working on pressing issues. This year the Health Subcommittee continued its fight against one of our nation’s biggest problems: the opioid crisis. In 2016 alone, more than 64,000 Americans died because of this epidemic. Since 2012, the Energy and Commerce Committee has worked to highlight and find solutions to this growing problem. In October, the committee held month-long events ranging from a member day, where members shared stories and solutions as well a committee-wide hearing focused on combating this problem. As Chairman Walden said, “We have a duty to our constituents and the American people to combat this epidemic from all angles.” That’s why, as 2017 comes to a close, the Health Subcommittee plans kicking off 2018 with a framework for legislative action and continuing the fight.

But my work doesn’t stop there. Our nation’s energy resources continue to be a top priority for the Energy Subcommittee. Just this year, the Energy Subcommittee pursued multiple pieces of legislation focused on modernizing and expanding hydropower infrastructure. Like much of our nation’s infrastructure, energy infrastructure only has a certain lifespan. And as early as 2025, 70 percent of the dams in the U.S. will need to be updated. So far, the House has passed 10 bills that aim to fix this problem by promoting hydropower development and ensuring individuals have access to this emission-free energy resource.

The Energy and Commerce Committee plans to start 2018 will a full legislative agenda that tackles more pressing issues facing our country. I look forward to another great year and can’t wait to get started.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Agenda posted for Tuesday Joplin City Council meeting

Tuesday, January 2, 2018
6:00 P.M., Council Chambers


Call To Order

Pledge of Allegiance of the United States of America

Roll Call




Finalization Of Consent Agenda


Reports And Communications


Citizen Requests And Petitions


Public Hearings


Consent Agenda


Minutes Of The December 18, 2017 Council Meeting

  1. DEC 18 2017.PDF




A RESOLUTION recognizing Barbara L. Hogelin upon her retirement of active service as City Clerk for the City of Joplin.
  1. RS2018-001.PDF

Ordinances - Emergency



AN ORDINANCE approving Work Authorization with Burns and McDonnell Engineering Inc. in the not to exceed amount of One Hundred Ninety Four Thousand, One Hundred Seventy and No/100 Dollars ($194,170.00) for engineering services associated with the Engineering Services Design, Bidding and Pre-construction Management for the Installation of a Parallel Force Main from Filmore Bridge Lift Station to the Gravity line on Apricot road; authorizing the City Manager to execute and containing an emergency clause.

Ordinances - First Reading



AN ORDINANCE amending Chapter 42, Courts, Article II, Municipal Court, Section 42-35, Court costs and other fees, by repealing Section 42-35 subsections (f) and (i).


AN ORDINANCE establishing grades and accepting the Plat of KUM AND GO Addition located Southwest Corner of Glendale Avenue and Main Street, in the City of Joplin, Newton County, Missouri.

Ordinances - Second Reading And Third Reading


Unfinished Business


New Business



CASE 037-17:   2015 East 32nd Street (vacant lot located west of 2023 East 32nd Street) - A request to
Review the Site Plan for a fast food restaurant – Reyling Design & Consulting.

News From The PIO

Joplin City Clerk retiring after 20 years at the job

On the day she is retiring as Joplin City Clerk, Tuesday, January 2, the Joplin City Council will offer a resolution honoring Barbara Hogelin for her 24 years of service to the city.

Former Mayor Ron Richard appointed Hogelin city clerk in 1997, following her four years of service as deputy city clerk.

In March, Hogelin was named Outstanding City Clerk of Missouri during the Missouri City Clerks and Finance Officer Association annual conference.

The text of the resolution honoring Hogelin is printed below:

A RESOLUTION recognizing Barbara L. Hogelin upon her retirement of active service as City Clerk for the City of Joplin.

WHEREAS, on Tuesday January 2, 2018, Barbara L. Hogelin retired as City Clerk for the City of Joplin, Missouri after 24 years of dedicated service; and

WHEREAS, Barbara was appointed City Clerk in 1997 by Mayor Ron Richard; and

WHEREAS, during her tenure in the City Clerk’s office, Barbara served under 12 mayors, including Cheryl Dandridge, Bernie Johnson, Ron Richard, Earl Carr, Darieus Adams, Richard Russell, Phil Stinnett, Jon Tupper, Gary Shaw, Mike Woolston, Melodee Colbert Kean and Michael Seibert; and had the pleasure of working with over 40 council members; and

WHEREAS, Barbara prepared hundreds of agendas and attended over 550 regular council meetings, numerous pre-meetings, informal meetings, special meetings and work sessions; and managed the archiving of over 5500 ordinances and 1150 resolutions during her career; and

WHEREAS, Barbara’s vision, passion and love of her city has been instrumental in restoring the Newman building into a shining example of historic preservation that is much more than a place for city government business; it has become a museum with priceless and meaningful artwork, artifacts and displays; and

WHEREAS, Barbara Hogelin was an enthusiastic leader at work and in the community, serving in many organizations and accumulating an impressive list of accomplishments, recognitions and awards including the prestigious Missouri City Clerks and Finance Officers Association Outstanding City Clerk for 2017, and being named a finalist for Joplin’s Annie Baxter Award.


Section 1. The City of Joplin does hereby recognize and extend appreciation to Barbara L. Hogelin for her dedicated service of Twenty-Four years.

Section 2. That the people of Joplin, Missouri do hereby extend best wishes to Barbara for many enjoyable and successful years.

Section 3. That this Resolution shall be in full force and effect from and after the date of its passage and approval.


Barbara Hogelin named Outstanding City Clerk of Missouri

Joplin City Council expected to approve plan to build Dairy Queen on 32nd Street

Joplin City Council will review plans to build a Dairy Queen at 2023 E. 32nd Street when it meets 6 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall.

The property is currently a vacant lot, according to the material provided to council members.

The restaurant footprint would cover approximately 2,600 square feet and seat 70. The review from the Planning and Zoning Commission indicates it would have adequate parking.

Restaurant officials told the Planning and Zoning Commission the restaurant would employ 40 people, with 15 of them working full time.

Joplin Police Department captures second suspect in Christmas Eve murder

The second suspect in the Christmas Eve murder of Sean Harris, 47, surrended to the Joplin Police Department.

A JPD news release says Artilius Jordan, 47, Joplin, was taken into custody without incident 5:20 p.m. today at 901 South Jefferson.

The probable cause statement said Jordan shot Harris at least twice during a confrontation at 627 S. Byars Avenue because he believed Harris was having sex with his girlfriend. Jordan faces charges of first degree murder, two counts of assault and three counts of armed criminal action.

Also behind bars after being arrested Tuesday is Moses Ramsey, 27, Joplin, who encouraged Jordan to shoot Harris. Ramsey is charged with the same crimes. Both men are being held without bond.

Previous posts

Suspect in Joplin murder charged with shooting another man in 2015, other suspect brutally beat girlfriend

Joplin murder suspect arrested, second suspect still at large

Joplin men charged with first degree murder, suspects still at large

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Probable cause: Joplin man accused of Christmas Eve murder believed victim was having sex with his girlfriend

Artilius Jordan shot Sean Harris in cold blood on Christmas Eve because he believed Harris was having sex with his girlfriend, according to a probable cause statement filed Tuesday in Jasper County Circuit Court.

Jordan, 47, Joplin, went to a home at 627 S. Byers Avenue, where his girlfriend was and where Harris was visiting, to confront him, according to the statement. Jordan was accompanied by Moses Ramsey and Joseph Czahor.

Harris was coming down the stairs of the apartment building when Jordan pulled a handgun and with Ramsey's encouragement, shot Harris at least twice, with one of the shots hitting him in the chest. Harris died at Freeman West Hospital.

Ramsey forced the girlfriend into the pickup and as they drove away, Jordan began beating the girlfriend, according to the probable cause statement.

"As Jordan was assaulting (the girlfriend) in the backseat of the extended cab pickup, the handgun went off, shooting Czahor in the back. Czahor dropped off the other passengers and drove himself to Freeman Hospital."

Ramsey, 27, Joplin, and Jordan were both charged with first degree murder, two counts of assault and three counts of armed criminal action.

Ramsey was arrested Tuesday. Jordan is still at large.

Earlier posts

Suspect in Joplin murder charged with shooting another man in 2015, other suspect brutally beat girlfriend

Joplin murder suspect arrested, second suspect still at large

Joplin men charged with first degree murder, suspects still at large

Preliminary hearing for accused killer of three-year-old Jayda Kyle set for February 1

The preliminary hearing for Jalen Dashawn Vaden, 22, Carl Junction, the accused killer of three-year-old Jayda Kyle has been scheduled for 10 a.m. February 1 before Judge Joseph Hensley in Jasper County Circuit Court.

A pretrial conference will be held January 31.

The dates were set during a hearing this morning.

Vaden, who is charged with second degree murder and felony child abuse, was the live-in boyfriend of Jayda Kyle's mother Devyn.

Previous posts

Jasper County Sheriff: We are still investigating Jayda Kyle's death

Children's Division documents: Grandfather attempting to manipulate Jayda Kyle murder investigation

Juvenile Office documents: Jayda Kyle suffered bleeding from brain, severely torn retina, probably already brain dead when she arrived in K. C.

Some thoughts on the Joplin Globe's article on the Jayda Kyle murder investigation

Probable cause: Carl Junction man abused three-year-old, left her on the floor bloody, unconscious

Jasper County Sheriff: We are still investigating Jayda Kyle murder

During a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Jasper County Sheriff Randee Kaiser said his department is continuing to investigate the murder of three-year-old Jayda Kyle of Carl Junction.

While Kaiser offered few details about the ongoing investigation, he said that his office's top priority is also to see justice for Jayda, using the term that has been featured prominently on social media since word of the child's death became public.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Sentencing date set for Jarub Baird on meth conspiracy, money laundering charges

A 3 p.m. February 27 sentencing date has been scheduled in U. S. District Court in Kansas City for Jarub Baird, 27, Carthage, who pleaded guilty to meth conspiracy and money laundering in July.

A plea agreement filed with the court in August indicates Baird acknowledged participating in crimes that according to federal guidelines call for a minimum sentence of nine years in prison.

Baird pleaded guilty in July after being indicted by a federal grand jury in April 2016.

The plea agreement also details the role Baird, 27, Carthage, played in the events that led to his guilty plea to charges of meth conspiracy and money laundering:

The Buchanan County Drug Strike Force (BCDSF), Springfield, Missouri Police Department, and the Drug Enforcement Administration developed a methamphetamine drug conspiracy in 2015 involving the following people; Kenneth Bryant Lake, Michael Ryan Nevatt, Scott Bryan Sands, Jerry Lee Brown and Travis Lee Bethel.

Investigators identified Kenneth Lake as the original head of the organization coordinating vehicle transport shipments of methamphetamine to Springfield, Missouri, for later distribution and drug proceeds (United States Currency) shipments out of Springfield, Missouri, for payment of the delivered or ordered methamphetamine.

Subsequently, Michael Ryan Nevatt became the head of an organization involving all those listed above and Kara Renee Baze, Breanna Nicole Hall, Autumn Sky Provience, Lanny Eugene Ham, Jarub Ray Baird, Cindy Ann Nevatt, Tara L. Harken, and Jake Ian Nixon.

This organization also obtained methamphetamine elsewhere and got it delivered to the Springfield, Missouri, area for later distribution, along with sending drug proceeds out of the area for payment of methamphetamine ordered or delivered.

Lake, Sands, and Aaron Randall Stull, coordinated shipments of methamphetamine by United States Postal Service parcels to the Springfield, Missouri, residence of Michelle Vanne Gray where it was stored then retrieved for later distribution.

On 08/28/2015, Kenny Lake and Kara Baze are arrested during a search warrant at a hotel room in Springfield, Missouri. Officers recovered $102,787 in United States currency, a loaded handgun and a small amount of methamphetamine.

Michael Nevatt and BAIRD arrived in a black Corvette and after a brief chase were apprehended. In 2016, multiple witnesses gave statements to investigators in this case about BAIRD’s involvement.

In summary, those witnesses link BAIRD with Michael Nevatt and Nevatt’s methamphetamine distribution activities. Those witnesses describe BAIRD’s activities in assisting Nevatt with obtaining and distributing more than five kilograms of methamphetamine and with collecting drug proceeds for methamphetamine distributed.

Defendant acknowledges that while the information set out herein may not allege exact amounts of methamphetamine associated with the defendant, the amounts alleged herein, along with other statements and evidence in the case, total more than five-hundred (500) grams of methamphetamine for which the defendant is responsible.

The defendant further acknowledges the substances with which defendant was involved were in fact methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance.

Finally, defendant acknowledges that at least some acts committed in furtherance of this distribution conspiracy were committed within the Western District of Missouri, during the dates alleged in the indictment.

Defendant additionally acknowledges that during the dates charged in the superseding indictment, and at least partially within the Western District of Missouri, the defendant used or knew at least some of the proceeds obtained from defendant’s methamphetamine distribution, and the distribution of others in the conspiracy, were used to pay living expenses, buy assets, and to purchase additional methamphetamine for distribution.

Defendant also acknowledges that he and other co-conspirators used cash during the conspiracy to conceal the nature of their illegal activities.

Additional evidence exists that may further implicate the defendant in these conspiracies. The defendant acknowledges that evidence was provided to defendant’s attorney via discovery and the defendant has had an opportunity to review it with the attorney prior to signing this plea agreement and further acknowledges that evidence, and any additional evidence obtained prior to sentencing, may affect the ultimately determined drug responsibility level and sentence of the defendant.

The parties have agreed to a drug level not less than a drug level 30, and have agreed to a a guidelines enhancement of two (2) levels as a result of defendant’s guilty plea to the money laundering conspiracy.

However, it is understood by the parties that the pre-sentence investigation or the Court at sentencing could assess a higher drug level of responsibility, and other enhancements, for the defendant based on the evidence in the case to date or that becomes known later.

In the event a higher drug level, or other enhancements, are determined by the pre-sentence investigation or the Court at sentencing, the parties are free to express their respective positions about that higher drug level, or other enhancements, at sentencing.

Public defender to represent accused Jayda Kyle killer at Wednesday hearing

A public defender will represent Jalen Dashawn Vaden, 22, Carl Junction, the accused killer of three-year-old Jayda Kyle when the next hearing in his case is held 9 a.m. Wednesday before Judge Joseph Hensley in Jasper County Circuit Court.

Public defender Darren Wallace filed an entry of appearance today, according to online court records.

That appears to be a change of plans for Vaden, who told Hensley during a December 14 video arraignment that he would be represented by a private attorney.

Vaden, is charged with second degree murder and felony child abuse in connection with the December 1 death of the three-year-old following abuse that took place earlier in the week at their home at 405 Meadow Lake Drive. He was the live-in boyfriend of the child's mother.

Vaden is being held without bond in the Jasper County Jail.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Suspect in Joplin murder charged with shooting another man in 2015, other suspect brutally beat girlfriend

One of the suspects in the fatal shooting of a Joplin man Sunday night at 627 South Byers was charged with another shooting in Joplin on December 1, 2015.

A news release issued by the Joplin Police Department on that date said Artilius Jordan, 45 (at the time) was arrested on charges of first degree assault and armed criminal action with bond set at $500,000 cash only.

The victim in the shooting, Corey M. Walstead, 23, Diamond,  was being taken to the hospital by a private vehicle when the vehicle had a flat tire and the driver called the police department.

An ambulance was called and took Walstead to the hospital, according to the news release. The police, who had been told that the shooting took place at Jordan's home at 1301 E. 15th, executed a search warrant, recovered evidence, and arrested Jordan at 11 p.m. at 1303 E. 13th.

At the time of the shooting, Jordan was already on probation after pleading guilty to a felony burglary charge on July 28, 2014.

According to the probable cause statement for that offense, Jordan burglarized Joplin Auto Sales, 1401 S. Main.

Jordan was given a suspended five-year sentence and placed on supervised probation for five years.

Since that time, multiple probation violations have been filed against Jordan, including one filed two days after the Joplin shooting. Despite the violations, Jordan has never been sent to prison.

After the Joplin shooting, the Department of Probation and Parole recommended that Jordan's probation be continued, according to online Jasper County Circuit Court records.

Two probation violations have been filed this year and on October 16 following numerous delays, Judge David Mouton ruled that Jordan violated four conditions of his probation ... and then ordered that he be continued on probation without any modifications and without extending his probation.

As for the December 2015 shooting, no record of it remains on Jasper County online court records, indicating the prosecuting attorney either did not file charges or charges were dropped at some point.

Less than three months after Judge Mouton's ruling continuing Jordan's probation, Jordan faces a charge of first degree murder, two felony assault charges and three counts of armed criminal action

The other man facing the same charges in connection with the shooting that took the life of Sean Harris, 47, Joplin, Moses Ramsey, 27, Joplin, also has had numerous run-ins with law enforcement.

Ramsey pleaded guilty on July 19, 2014, to felony possession of a controlled substance, after a Joplin Police Department traffic stop turned up meth in his vehicle. He was sentenced to three years in prison to run concurrently with a three-year sentence on a felony domestic assault charge, with the probable cause statement in that case indicating Ramsey terrorized his girlfriend:

On January 10, 2014, Joplin police officers responded to a call of a man who was "acting crazy' with a gun at 110 N. Sergeant Avenue.

A woman told police her boyfriend of three to four months, Moses Ramsey "choked and hit her" that morning Another witness verified the statement, according to the document.

After Ramsey was arrested, the woman told police that Ramsey had assaulted her several times.

On January 7, 2014 "Ramsey choked her on her couch, cut her with a knife and head butted her three times in the face. (She) stated that Ramsey then put both of his hands around her throat and squeezed (She) stated that she had trouble breathing when Ramsey choked her. (She) stated that Ramsey then took the steak knife against her chest and started making small scrapes on her skin and threatened to kill her."

The abuse continued two nights later, according to the probable cause statement. "Ramsey acted like he had a handgun in his waistband and threatened to shoot her with the gun. (She) stated that she did not see the gun, but there was an unknown object on Ramsey's right hip. (She) stated that she has observed Ramsey with a gun in the past. Ramsey hit her in the face with a plastic container.

"(She) started that Ramsey also grabbed around her neck with his two hands and forced her down onto the bed in front of her friend. (She) stated that Ramsey then head butted her in the face when she refused to leave the house with him. (She) stated that when Ramsey observed police officers outside of the house he told her to cover up her face with makeup and started to look for places to hide."

The probable cause statement said the woman had "multiple dark bruises on her face and stated that has been to Freeman Urgent Care for her injuries. (She) stated that she has to have her nose reset because Ramsey broke it when he head butted her on January 7, 2014.

Ramsey and Jordan are still at large.

Some thoughts on the Joplin Globe's article on the Jayda Kyle murder investigation

I am still not quire sure what to make of the page one article in Sunday's Joplin Globe about the investigation into the murder of three-year-old Jayda Kyle of Carl Junction.

It started with the headline- Documents drive wedge between families in abuse case.

That does not seem right. From everything I have seen and heard about this horrible event, it was the death of Jayda Kyle that drove the wedge between the families.

Yet that story was about the documents and about the Joplin Globe's efforts to make it appear as if there was something suspicious about those documents.

The reports that have popped up appear to be the type of documents often provided to families involved in DSS and juvenile office cases. They are not records normally made public or released to the media and the Globe has not been able to obtain them through official channels or to confirm their validity.

I hate to think of how many important stories the public would never know about if reporters relied on documents provided through official channels.

Then after the article makes it clear that it can't confirm the documents, the newspaper tries to have it both ways- we can't confirm these documents are real, but people are talking about it on social media, so here is what these unconfirmed documents are saying.

One problem with the Globe's approach is that later on in the article, the reporters confirm that the documents were legitimate through quotes from the lawyer representing Devyn Kyle and her parents, Judd and Carmen McPherson.

"It is unfortunate that confidential documents have been released by the other side," Springfield attorney Joe Passanise, who represents Devyn Kyle and her parents, told the Globe.

Passanise does not say that these are forged documents or allege that important information was left out of the documents- he says quite clearly that confidential documents were released.

So why all of the fuss about the Globe not being able to confirm that the documents were legitimate?

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the article is appearing in the Globe five days after these documents have already been on Facebook sites and have already been featured prominently both on the Turner Report and by reporter Jordan Aubey on KOAM.

Aubey confirmed that the documents were legitimate and so did I. And as far as i can tell so did the two Joplin Globe reporters who worked on the story. 

The Globe article does appear to have a strong slant toward the family of Devyn Kyle:

There is nothing in either document that refutes or contradicts the probable cause affidavit filed with the charges against Vaden.

(Note: Jalen Vaden, Devyn Kyle's live-in boyfriend, has been charged with second degree murder and felony child abuse.)

And then there are the final two paragraphs of the Globe article:

Passanise wishes to put to rest concerns about the investigation raised by the DSS report.

I can say that the McPherson family denies any wrongdoing and has been fully cooperative with law enforcement and the DSS office in their investigations," Passanise said.

Once again, this confirms that the documents are legitimate and that raises a question.

What was the Joplin Globe trying to prove with this article?

Previous Articles

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Joplin R-8 Board hires six teachers, 10 certified employees, accepts six resignations

During its December 12 closed session, the Joplin R-8 Board of Education hired six teachers and 10 classified employees and approved 19 substitute teachers.

The board accepted six resignations.

Certified Employments: Shelby Campbell, Jodi Steward, Gloria Turner, Brenda Noirfalise, William VanCleave, and Jessica Woods

Classified Employments: Lindsay Boman, Kerry Cravens, Janet Dowell, Sharon Green, Cherrie Haerr, Veronica Macfarlane, Susan Morehouse, Mitchell Potter, Heather Pugh, and Sawyer Smith

Substitute Teachers: Aishah Alhomsi, Gordon Blodgett, David Brinkley, Katlyn Finch, Tracy Fisher, Cheyenne Friend, Sarah Glidewell, Bryant Heckart, Jimmydon Jackson, Jalal Khader, Lindsey Koucky, Jordan Lindquist, Bailey Rexford, Kimberlin Sansone, Galen Stauffer, Daniel Todd, Kelsey Vene, Bethany White, and Jessica Winters

Resignations: Kate McDonald, Nicole Shafer, Allison Carmichael, Laura Hurd, Grant Conrad, and Michael Cox.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Nancy Hughes: Jerry's Christmas

“Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you; You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger.”
Luke 2:11-12 (NIV)

I’ll never forget that precious little boy: freckles scattered like tiny raindrops across his entire face, including his ears. Big brown eyes partially obscured by wispy blonde hair that brushed against an ever present smile minus two front teeth.

Jerry was a first grade student at the elementary school where I worked. He came from a home that was short on money but long on love. His clothes were always someone else’s property first, but he never seemed to care.

And this Christmas season was no different.

As a mother of three, I was frantically trying to balance home, husband, kids and job while I shopped endlessly for the perfect “only thing I want” gifts for my family. Somewhere in the rush of the season my focus shifted from the birth of a baby in a manger to the number of presents under our Christmas tree.

There was some success but at a price…a high price. My Christmas budget was shrinking rapidly. “Why couldn’t my children want something a little cheaper?” I kept thinking. “Why do they think they have to have every thing they see on television?”

Those questions were occupying my thoughts as I walked down the first grade hall and saw Jerry coming toward me in his winter coat that was about three sizes too large and worn tennis shoes minus the laces.

“Hey, Jerry! How are you?” “I’m good, Miss Nancy. It’s almost Christmas…Jesus’ birthday…did you know?” I couldn’t help but smile at that comment. “Yes, I have heard that. So what do you want for Christmas, Jerry?”

He quickly replied “Oh, I already know what I’m getting. It’s the same every year.”

At this point I would have expected a child making that statement to duck his head in disappointment and go on, but not Jerry.

As I bent down to hug and encourage him, Jerry put his hands on my shoulders and, with a huge smile, continued. “When I wake up on Christmas morning, there will be a BIG candy cane under my pillow!” he exclaimed as he licked his lips and rubbed his tummy in anticipation of that moment. “And then, under the tree, I will get a little Matchbox car to add to my others. I can hardly wait, Miss Nancy!”

As I hugged Jerry and sent him on to class, I could not hold back the tears of sadness – not for Jerry but for my attitude. Instead of focusing on Christ and His birth, I had gotten caught up in the world’s view that the number of gifts you have under the Christmas tree determines your happiness.

Christmas at our home would never be the same again. All because of a candy cane under a pillow, a Matchbox car under a tree…and a very thankful little boy named Jerry.

Father, thank you for the most priceless gift of love you could ever send – the gift of your Son. May we never forget that He went from a manger to the cross for us. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

R.A.P. it up . . .


Do you find yourself focused more on gifts than the Giver of Life at Christmas?

Have you talked with your children about the Ultimate Gift that Jesus gave each of us?


Sit down with your children and help them write on slips of paper the gifts that they can give Jesus this Christmas, like trusting Him, being obedient, and sharing Him with friends.

Have them wrap each of their gifts for Jesus in a box and offer each one to Him on Christmas morning in prayer.

Power Verses

Luke 2:11-12 (NIV) “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you; You will find a baby wrapped in clothes and lying in a manger.”

Romans 6:23 (NIV) “For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

2 Corinthians 9:15 (NIV) “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!”

John 1:14 a (NIV) “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.”

Isaiah 9:6-7 (NIV) “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

(For more of Nancy Hughes' writing and information about her books, check out her blog, Encouragement from the War Room.)

Links provided to top Turner Report/Inside Joplin posts for the week

While the Turner Report/Inside Joplin blogs have maintained steadily increasing readership over the past few years and has had occasional posts go viral, it has not been often that more than one post goes viral during a given week.

This week, there have been three.

The number one and two Turner Report posts, both dealing with the murder of three-year-old Jayda Kyle provided two of those, with the post on Children's Division documents that allege that Jayda's maternal grandfather has attempted to influence the investigation becoming the number one post in the 14-year history of the Turner Report.

The third viral post came tonight on the Inside Joplin Obituaries blog. Though it has only been a few hours since it was posted, the obituary of 31-year-old Daven Divine of Joplin is already the top post for the week with viewership showing no signs of slowing down.

The links to the top Turner Report, Inside Joplin, and Inside Joplin Obituaries posts are featured below:

The Turner Report

1. Children's Division documents: Grandfather attempting to manipulate Jayda Kyle murder investigation

2. Juvenile Office documents: Jayda Kyle suffered bleeding from the brain, severely torn retina, probably already brain dead when she arrived in K. C.

3. Sarcoxie woman arrested with 29 grams of meth and four-year-old in car had five children taken from her in 2004

4. David Hargroder: Joplin area impacted by ongoing meth epidemic

5. Joplin man pleads guilty to drug trafficking, weapons charges

6. Preliminary hearing scheduled for accused killer of three-year-old Jonathan Munoz-Bilbrey

7. State auditor supports legislation providing more tools to fight public corruption

8. Seven of top 10 all-time Turner Report posts published in 2017

9. Billy Long explains how he and Donald Trump made America great again

10. Nancy Hughes: Are you going with me?

Inside Joplin

1. Webb City man stiffs Buffalo Wild Wings on the bill but leaves his wallet behind

2. Report: Softball coach shot by Vinita lawyer was dating lawyer's ex-wife

3. Joplin teen arrested for burglary at Equality Bar

4. Joplin woman in surgery following shooting at Gastrip on 32nd

5. Barton County Sheriff's Office: Is this house abandoned in the middle of the road yours?

6. Joplin pedestrian killed in accident near Carthage

7. Jasper County Dissolution of Marriage Petitions

8. No serious injuries reported in six-vehicle crash in front of Academy Sports

9. Joplin Police Department Weekend Arrests

10. Joplin Police Department Arrests December December 21-22

Inside Joplin Obituaries

1. Daven Divine

2. Ty Grafton

3. Sara Holden

4. Hank Bridges

5. Paula Bennett

6. Macey Bean

7. Kelsey Markley

8. Linda Stanley

9. Gerald Gess

10. Dale Carrier

Friday, December 22, 2017

Billy Long explains how he and Donald Trump have made America great again

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

“I’m not running to be President of the world. I’m running to be President of the United States – and as your President, I will fight for every last American job.” President Trump said these words during a campaign speech just four months before taking office. This quote couldn’t be more true. As his first year in office is coming to an end, President Trump has prioritized growing the economy, creating jobs and rolling back regulations with tremendous results.

President Trump took office with his sights set on overregulation. On January 30, 2017, he announced that for every new regulation introduced, two regulations must be eliminated. Over the last year alone 1,579 regulations have been eliminated, delayed or streamlined, saving $8.1 billion. However, in 2018, the stakes are even higher. Agencies are planning to eliminate three regulations for every new regulation introduced, and are committed to achieving a net savings of almost $10 billion.

Congress has also made a point to roll back regulations. Earlier this year the House of Representatives passed both the Midnight Rules Relief Act and the Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act. Both of these bills aim to prevent outgoing administrations from passing costly rules without Congress having the ability to overturn them. The REINS Act specifically requires Congress to approve major rules and regulations which result in an annual economic impact of at least $100 million before they take effect.

But these results should not just be measured at the federal level. Cutting back regulations has tangible impacts for hardworking Americans. During President Obama’s term, the unemployment rate was as high as 10 percent. Compare that to President Trump’s first year in office. The latest report had the unemployment rate at 4.1 percent, which is lower than it had been during any point in the Obama administration. The only number going up is the number of jobs added to the economy. So far under President Trump, more than 1.5 million jobs have been added to the U.S. economy.

Not only are more Americans getting back to work, the stock market has reached new heights during this administration. The Dow Jones, Nasdaq and S&P have hit record highs, with the Dow Jones rising 5,000 points in a year for the first time in its history.

Since his first month in office, President Trump’s bold leadership has proven to impact every aspect of the economy. I will continue to work with him to reduce regulatory burdens and make our economy even stronger.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Seven of all-time top 10 Turner Report posts published this year

This morning, I was looking at some Turner Report posts from December 2016. One of them featured the top 10 posts for that week and most of them were about the Joplin R-8 School District, including one about the final payment being made on former Superintendent C. J. Huff's "retirement' pay.

That same week, I published the top 10 visited posts all time on the Turner Report.

To give you an idea of how the readership of this blog has improved during 2017, seven of those 10 posts are no longer on the list, which, of course, means that only three of the top 10 posts were published before 2017.

No longer in the top 10 are the indictment of Neosho businessman Blake Altman on child pornography charges, the death of Arkansas sisters in an auto accident, an FBI/SEC investigation into Northpark Mall's owners, the probable cause statement in the murder of a Golden City girl, Billy Long's campaign donors paying for nearly $20,000 in meals for him over a three-month period, and "The Books that Got Me Fired," the 2013 recording of my four-and-a-half minute interrogation by former Joplin R-8 H. R. Director Tina Smith.

The most-visited post of all time, at the current time 13,000 visitors over number two, was published three days ago and featured Children's Division documents concerning the murder of three-year-old Jayda Kyle.

Other new entrants into the Top 10 include the arrest of a North Middle School reading teacher on sex charges involving a student, my September 11 assault, the connection between Betsy DeVos and the Blunt family, details on sex charges against a Joplin doctor and lawsuits against the Rangeline Sonic and Exploration Station.

Both lists are featured below:

1. Children's Division documents: Grandfather attempting to manipulate Jayda Kyle murder investigation

2. Child pornography scandal erupts at Joplin High School

3. Probable cause statement: North Middle School teacher, 37, had sex with 13-year-old student

4. Lawsuit claims: Exploration Station pre-school teachers resigned rather than lie about abuse to two-year-old

5. Donald Trump Jr. attacks teachers in convention speech

6. Probable cause statement: Teacher shot Hailey Owens, stuffed her body in trash bags

7. Joplin doctor pleads not guilty to statutory rape, sodomy charges

8. Explosive lawsuit claim; Pervasive sexual harassment at Rangeline Sonic led to rapes of two underage girls

9. Thirty minutes ago, I was attacked

10. Betsy DeVos and the Blunt connection

Top 10 All-Time At This Time Last Year

1. Child pornography scandal erupts at Joplin High School

2. Donald Trump Jr attacks teachers in convention speech

3. Probable cause statement: Teacher shot Hailey Owens, stuffed body in trash bags

4. Grand jury indicts Neosho businessman on child pornography charges

5. Report: FBI, SEC investigating Northpark Mall owners

6. Arkansas sisters killed in three-car accident in Pineville

7. 2012 probable cause statement: Suspect in Golden City girl's kidnapping, death, assaulted child

8. Billy Long report: Nearly 19K in meals, multiple trip to Las Vegas, Florida

9. The books that got me fired

10. Former Webb City High School principal charged with murdering Springfield couple