You know how to play: Vote for the local newsmaker you think made the biggest idiot of themselves this week. And the nominees...
1. Kenneth Gladney: Gladney is the man whose attorney David Brown says was selling flags at a health care forum last month when he was beat up by union members. (View a video of Gladney's purported beating here.) After walking away from the scuffle, Gladney showed up two days later in a wheelchair at a Tea Party protest where the Post-Dispatch reported that Gladney had no health insurance and accepted donations from the crowd to pay his medical bills. (Brown says Gladney actually has health insurance through his wife and states that the P-D printed a correction to this effect -- though none could be easily found online or through a Nexis database search.) Anyway, Gladney again made news this week when he attended a press conference outside the local NAACP office in which a group of black conservatives demanded to know why the agency hasn't launched a racism investigation into the union members (one of whom, like Gladney, happens to be African-American!) who Gladney says beat him up. The press conference ended with a thud, however, when the NAACP said it would review the matter and then chided Gladney and his cohorts for holding a press conference instead of first asking the agency to investigate the incident.*
2. Newlyweds on Acid: A Crestwood couple married last Saturday made headlines this week when they took LSD and then went for a walk in a Fenton park. Their honeymoon hike turned into a bad trip when the new bride began to have seizures from the drug. She was airlifted to a hospital while her new husband was taken to police headquarters and booked for drug possession.
3. Elizabeth Thrasher: The St. Peters woman this week became the first person in Missouri charged under a new felony cyber harrassment law. If you can follow this hillbilly family tree, Thrasher was angry with the daughter of her ex-husband's girlfriend. So, what does she do? Thrasher makes an erotic advertisement for the 17-year-old girl -- without the teen's knowledge -- and posts its on Craigslist. The teenager then gets messages and pornographic photos emailed and texted to her from men responding to the ad.
4.Darius Chappille a.k.a. "Naked Guy on Flight 947": Police yesterday charged Chappille of Oakland, California, with exposing himself to a female passenger on a Southwest flight bound for St. Louis. In addition to whipping it out, Chappille also punched the female passenger in the face and took off all his clothes. He was eventually subdued by other passengers and the plane forced to return to Oakland before once more taking off for St. Louis.
Phew, there you have it! Vote after the jump!
*Gladney's attorney, David Brown, called to respond to an original airing of this post in which he said there were a number of factual errors enumerated here:
1. Gladney, says Brown, is an unemployed, political independent and not a "conservative black activist" as originally reported. 2. Brown says Gladney was indeed injured (bruising and cuts) by union members, though Brown refuses to go into details about those injuries due to pending litigation. 3. Gladney did not ask for handouts from protesters as originally reported, but accepted donations when a Tea Party member asked the crowd to give Gladney money. 4. Gladney was not the person who organized the NAACP press conference, says Brown. Gladney simple attended on behalf of the black conservative group move-on-up.org. 5. Brown says that in addition to a black attacker, Gladney was also beaten by a white man and woman who -- along with the black attacker -- may have used the "N-word." 6. The NAACP, says Brown, said they would review the matter but did not promise to investigate it.
The RFT regrets any errors.
Note: Brown declined to make Gladney available for interview to clear up any other issues.