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Newspaper Archive of
The Excelsior Springs Standard
Excelsior Springs, Missouri
April 18, 2000     The Excelsior Springs Standard
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April 18, 2000
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Tiger tennis team bounces back with three,team sweep. Tomorrow&apos;s WEATHER .:, ,, : ........ , ,, A chance of rain o Wednesday and ursday, with temps droppingafterat frorn'tti70s into e 60s. Lows in the 40s, Today'"S Weotl'ferKld, Allle Holland, Elkhom SChOOl ] T ]ill]l ]] ' ]]]]]]][ ]] ] ] ] ] ]]]] Greatest' is Saturday The World's Greatest Easter Hunt & Story Time. pre- by Grace Family War- Center, will be held at 2 this Saturday, April 22. at Accelerated Elementary Registration to win one of bicycles and other prizes 1 p.m. For more information, call or 630-1317. is at Furniture tomorrow The Excelsior Springs Area :f Commerce will hold Coffee from 7!30-9 tomorrow at Furniture 1325 Italian Way. , The coffees are held as an for local Chamber to familiarize with other Chamber and their businesses, of May 15-19; a.m. onthe regu. day, but the picked uP Leaves and grass clippings in biodegradable bags, in =ameter be ed with ne in Heartland SE,a pro- that encourages ging the incentive packages, its monthly k-up for the next month | a.m, on S=urday, April 29, Christian 417 Concoue Ave;' Towne Exceisor Spdngs, For more information, cam Pat Fairley at 630,1207, program, art are tonight Lewis Accelerated Be- ttwo Apri! , starting at 6 p:m. "Music of Mexico" at the schooli and ' an: aJl:sool asium area <iergarten 911 call leads to death Officer shoots and kills man at local mobile home By ERIC COPELAND Managing Editor A man is dead and an officer is on administrative leave fol- lowinga shooting incident in the Excelsior Manor Mobile Home Community Saturday. Excelsior Springs Police Chief John McGovern said local police received a 911 call from what they believe was a male caller at about 3:52 p.m. on Sat- urday. The man, who did not iden- tify himself, said that someone was in his residence who did not belong there, then hung up. Four officers responded to the scene and found the door to the trailer open and the screen in the front yard. Two officers went to the back of the trailer to cover the outside, and the other two entered the front door and were confronted by 37-year-old Jeffrey D. Hodges, Excelsior Springs. Hodges was wielding a knife described by the officers as a hunting knife. The officer ordered Hedges to drop the knife, but he contin- ued to advance. McGovern said one officer managed to get out of the way but the other, a five-year veteran of Excelsior Springs Po- lice Department, was backed up against a wall. He fired twice, striking Hedges twice in the chest. Hedges was pronounced dead at the scene. McGovern said the investi- gation was turned over to the Missouri State Highway Patrol, and the officer who fired the shots was placed on administrative leave during the investigation. The other officers were given leave the night of the shooting, McGovern said, but the two who remained outside were put back on the road Sunday. The officer who entered the trailer but did not shoot was not placed on leave, but he is attend- ing training which had been ar- ranged prior to the incident. McGovern said such incidents are rare for any department, espe- cially the local one. "Nothing like this has hap- pened in my memory, and I've been here 26 years," he said Mon- day. "Ninety-nine point nine per- cent of all law enforcement offic- ers go through their entire careers never being in this position." He said that counseling will be made available not only to the officers directly involved in the incident, but to all the personnel on the department. "It's devastating to the offic- ers involved," he said, "but it also affects the entire department." He said the prosecutor was expected to review the c;L so,, but added he could not identify the officers until the prosecutor is finished. In the meantime, with one officer on administrative leave and another undergoing training, McGovern still said the depart- ment was not particularly short- handed. "Actually, it won't have much of an im pact with regard to how many guys we have out there," he said Monday. The trailer in which the shooting occurred was cordoned off with police tape for the Missouri State Highway Patrol's investigation. The officer who fired the shots is on administrative leave, and the others have returned either to service or to planned training. (Photo by Eric Copeland) police deal with human side of incident By AMY BRANT Standard Staff Writer :': In the 26 years Excelsior Springs police Chief John ilcGovern has be'',on <the . force, he said he can't recall- ever having one of the department's officers facing a situation like the shooting of Jeffrey Hedges last Saturday, although there have been of- fleers shot at in the past. "This particular incident was handled by the book," said McGovern. '`The officer was put in a situation where he had ,, , , , no other alternative. It's a situa- tion you never think will happen to you." )al't. ing crisis intervention counsel. ing for about eight or nine of the officers and dispatchers involved in the case. He said two officers were inside the trailer at the time and were more directly involved. "Those inside were more dra- matically affected," stated McGovern. He said several other officers responded to the inci- dent and it has affected all of them, including two dispatch- ers, one of which was in train- ing. McGornsaid it's been a officer who actually did the shooting. " "He got highs and lows," said McGovem."lt's very dif. fieult for him to deal with." Although training is done for situations such as this, McGovern said it is only train- ing. "The emotional:impact See LOCAL, page 9 , , , t,, , Drama team takes third By ERIC COPELAND Managing Editor The Excelsior Springs High School Drama Team took third place at their state competition last weekend at Columbia Hickman High School. Sponsor Rebecca Browning said the three judges gave the students scores of 1, 2, and 5. "It was the 5 that killed us," she said. "But the 1 came from an MU theatre professor with a Ph.D. who was very complimen- tary of the kids, so that helped us a lot." Friday's competition, com- prising two fields of 10 teams apiece, determined the two teams--the top ones from Fri- day--which would compete Saturday. The Liberty team, the only other one from our district, took See DRAMA, page 10 i/+: :i ' ::: !i i - i: i!ii ,@i!'ii!iii,i sink: :  , ; !!i!i ?!III :   : '