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Person of interest in custody after shooting of Metro bus driver

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Person of interest in custody after shooting of Metro bus driver

ST. LOUIS — A person of interest is in police custody following the shooting of a Metro bus driver last week, the Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis confirmed.

Detectives stopped a red Chrysler PT Cruiser at Jennings Station Road near Greyling Drive on Monday because it matched the description of a vehicle that may be connected to the case. The man driving the PT Cruiser was taken into custody.

Metro bus driver Jonathan Cobb was shot around 7:10 p.m. Friday in the 3400 block of Lucas and Hunt Road. Passengers reported that a single gunshot from outside of the bus struck Cobb, causing him to crash.  

Cobb remains hospitalized in critical condition. Several passengers were on the bus, but none of them were injured from the gunshot.

Jonathan Cobb

Police said ten minutes before the shooting, someone fired shots at another Metro bus near North Hanley and Airport Road. No one was seriously injured. A red PT Cruiser was observed near that shooting location as well, according to the Major Case Squad.

At a press conference on Monday, Cobb’s family pleaded for justice in the case.

“I try to think of words that I can say, but the only thing I can do is ask you all — if you know something, please! Please say something! Please! We’re begging the community,” said Cobb’s sister, Charna Wooten. “Jonathan needs justice!”

Cobb has worked for Bi-State for 9 years.  His family describes him as a loving and caring father of 1-year-old twin daughters and a talented musician, known as J-Traxx in St. Louis music circles.  

“He’s the type of person that you want to be around,” said Antoine Wooten, Cobb’s childhood guardian. “He’s the type of person you want in the room.” 

Cobb’s girlfriend said he cares deeply about their daughters and has talent in multiple aspects of music. 

“He’s a producer, manager, marketing advisor, situational manager,” said Keylla Johnson. “He’s one of those people that’s good at everything.” 

The Major Case Squad has 20 investigators working on the case. The Bi-State Development, which operates Metro, is cooperating with the investigation.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is encouraged to contact CrimeStoppers at 1-866-371-8477.  Tipsters can remain anonymous and be eligible for up to a $10,000 reward.

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What is the best face mask? Expert breaks down N95, KN95, KF94 and how to spot a fake

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What is the best face mask? Expert breaks down N95, KN95, KF94 and how to spot a fake

A self-proclaimed “mask nerd” warns that not all face coverings are alike, but the best ones work wonders.

His unmasking advice hits as cloth coverings are out and CDC-recommended respirators are in. But all the options present a daunting challenge as omicron lurks, but that’s where mechanical engineer and aerosol science expert Aaron Collins comes to the rescue.

“It’s way too confusing for consumers and I don’t blame them for being upset about this,” Collins said during a sit-down with Sen. Edward Markey on Friday that focused on best practices in choosing a mask. “There’s all kinds of weirdness around this.”

Collins, who tests respirators on his Youtube channel, agrees with the CDC’s recommendation to ditch cloth masks for tight-fitting masks that feature polypropylene filters: tightly woven synthetic fibers that create an electrostatic charge, trapping up to 99% of virus particles.

“We used our 1918 pandemic technology to start this. Let’s move on,” Collins said.

He also warned against relying on surgical masks, which feature good materials, but “lack the fit” necessary for strong protection against virus transmission.

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Trial scheduled in 1986 Chisholm homicide after DNA leads to suspect

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Trial scheduled in 1986 Chisholm homicide after DNA leads to suspect

A nearly four-week trial has been scheduled for the Chisholm, Minn., man accused of raping and killing a woman in 1986.

Michael Allan Carbo Jr. (St. Louis County Sheriff’s Department via AP)

Michael Allan Carbo Jr., 53, was arrested and charged in July 2020 after DNA evidence and privately maintained genealogy databases allegedly helped identify him as the man responsible for the death of 38-year-old Nancy Daugherty in northeastern Minnesota.

Judge Robert Friday, who previously affirmed one of the first-of-its-kind investigations in Minnesota, scheduled jury selection to begin June 1 in St. Louis County District Court in Hibbing. The presentation of evidence and arguments may continue as late as June 24.

Daugherty, a mother of two, was found dead inside her Chisholm home on July 16, 1986. She had been sexually assaulted, beaten and strangled, with police indicating there were signs of struggle both inside and outside the residence.

Over the years, authorities said “well over” 100 DNA samples from potential suspects were tested, but none resulted in a match. It was in late 2019 and early 2020 that Chisholm police made the decision to contract with Parabon NanoLabs, a company based in the state of Virginia, in hopes of developing new leads.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension released a sample of the suspect’s semen to another company, AKESOgen, in order to develop a single nucleotide polymorphism profile, which allows experts to determine physical characteristics and ancestry of an individual. Parabon then used that profile to search privately maintained databases known as GEDMatch and FamilyTreeDNA.

Nancy Daugherty
Nancy Daugherty (Courtesy photo via Forum News Service)

Carbo had never personally submitted a DNA sample to either database, but Parabon’s searches reportedly turned up several genetic relatives, leading to the development of family trees and the identification of him as a suspect. Carbo, 18 years old at the time of Daugherty’s killing, had lived within a mile of the victim and went to school with her children, court documents state.

BCA agents in July 2020 started surveillance of Carbo, retrieving trash bags he had thrown into a dumpster outside his Chisholm apartment building. Taking swabs of paper towels, facial tissues, Q-tips, a beer can and a SlimFast bottle, analysts said they were able to develop a DNA profile that was consistent with that of the suspect from 1986.

Agents then approached Carbo and asked him to voluntarily submit a sample, which again confirmed the match, according to court documents.

Judge Friday in November rejected constitutional challenges to the investigation, likely setting a precedent for police in the state to continue tapping into genetic databases in hopes of identifying suspects in decades-old cold cases.

Friday acknowledged the potential privacy pitfalls involved in the tactic, but found no violations of state or federal law. He concluded that police are free to test DNA that is “abandoned” at a crime scene and compare it against samples submitted to a database by consenting individuals.

Carbo, who is charged with intentional second-degree murder, has not yet filed notice of any defenses he may raise at trial. He remains jailed on $1 million bail.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant St. Louis County Attorney Chris Florey. Carbo is represented by public defender J.D. Schmid.

Using public genealogy data, in which people submit genetic samples to companies like Ancestry.com and 23andme.com in order to reveal their personal history, is a relatively new tool for law enforcement.

In early 2019, investigators used it to arrest a suspect in the 1993 slaying of Jeanne Ann Childs in Minneapolis.

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Ask Amy: Favorite grandson is the main course at dinner

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Ask Amy: Abusive ex-husband now wants to share cabin

Dear Amy: My grandmother is 91 and lives on her own. Her husband died a year ago.

Although she has a few other grandchildren locally, I have always been her favorite because I was the first grandson.

My mom lives less than a mile away and sees her almost daily, and my grandmother talks to her neighbors, so she isn’t totally isolated.

I am in my 40s and live 20 miles away.

Ever since I learned to drive, my grandmother has asked me to come over for dinner. She often tries to lock me into a date for the next dinner before the one I’m eating is even finished.

This has always been annoying.

Over the years I would jokingly complain about it, but let it go.

This past year, with her living alone, this has gotten worse.

Now she expects me to come at least twice a week and complains if she doesn’t get enough one-on-one time with me.

She also has been complaining that “It has been a while” since she last saw me when it has only been a few days.

I cringe when she calls or texts because I know I’ll be asked to come over for dinner. Then I have to come up with some excuse – or cave.

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