Police raid business of brother of Missouri gunman


Share
Posted Online: Feb. 08, 2013, 9:58 am
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story

GRANITE CITY, Ill. (AP) The owner of an Illinois storage lot is dismissing police claims that a raid of the business on the five-year anniversary of his brother's deadly rampage during a Missouri city council meeting was merely coincidence.

Investigators on Thursday seized what they say were three suspected stolen vehicles and a tractor-trailer from Paul Thornton's Scrap Solutions in Granite City, just northeast of St. Louis. Thornton, who has not been charged, said he can document that he owns the vehicles and that a towing company owns the semi rig.

The raid came a half decade since Thornton's brother, Charles 'Cookie' Thornton, 52, opened fire at Kirkwood City Hall, gunning down two police officers, two council members and the St. Louis suburb's public works director before being killed by police. Kirkwood's mayor, who was shot in the head during the gunfire, died months later.

Gary Brewer Sr., head of a regional auto-theft task force, said that officers executed a search warrant at the auto storage lot, said Thursday's seizures of the vehicles was a coincidence, insisting he wasn't aware of Paul Thornton's connection to his late brother. Brewer said the lot was used to dismantle stolen cars.

Paul Thornton, who was not at the lot when police arrived Thursday, questioned the timing, pressing that 'every police officer in the world knows when other police officers get killed.'

Before his 2008 rampage, Charles Thornton had a contentious relationship with Kirkwood city officials that dated back years. As the owner of a small contracting company, he was cited multiple times for violating municipal codes, and he was arrested twice in City Hall for disorderly conduct when he criticized officials during council meetings.














 




Local events heading








  Today is Saturday, Aug. 30, the 242nd day of 2014. There are 123 days left in the year.

1864 — 150 years ago: A large pair of elk, captured in Iowa, were exhibited in Market Square today.
1889 — 125 years ago: The Rock Island Arsenal dam was being constructed under the supervision of Charles Frances, of Lowell, Mass.
1914 — 100 years ago: Mrs. Frank Mixer, of Rock Island, was the winner of the final preliminary for the women's handicap golf cup at Rock Island arsenal links.
1939 — 75 years ago: Sixteen hundred persons — many from war-fearful Europe — arrived in New York aboard the German liner Bremen. For two days on the trip, passengers were cut off from the world with both incoming and outgoing radio messages banned.
1964 — 50 years ago: Police reported five youths have been involved in the theft of about seven cars in recent weeks. Three of the youths were arrested Saturday afternoon, one was in custody as the result of a previous arrest, and the fifth is expected to be arrested today.
1989 — 25 years ago: The Rock Island/Milan School Board is asking the city to tear down Franklin School and allow the school district to pay back the estimated $100,00 cost during 10 years.






(More History)