Missouri State Auditor Tom Schweich's chief of staff has released a statement about Schweich's death last Thursday. Trish Vincent was on the phone with Schweich and his wife Kathy the morning that he died in an apparent suicide.
"Tom and I talked at 7:20 AM on Thursday morning (2/26). He was distraught, as he had been the last few days, regarding untruths about his religion. He also said he had not slept and had been physically ill most of the night. I tried to counsel him on how to handle the situation, but he dismissed my advice and the call ended shortly thereafter.
Concerned, I called Kathy on her cell phone. She did not answer and I left a message. I then called Martha Fitz (assistant to former US Senator John Danforth) and asked her to call Kathy and request that she return my call.
Kathy did that at about 9:30 AM. I asked her how Tom was and she indicated that he had making phone calls and talking to people. While I was talking with Kathy, Tom came into the room and inquired who she was talking to. Kathy said it was me and that I was concerned about him. I told her I would let her go and to advise Tom that I would be checking back after lunch to see if he wanted to keep his afternoon appointments. Our call then ended.
This an extreme personal tragedy for his family, friends, staff and myself. I will have no further comment."
Martha Fitz released her own statement Thursday (3/5) about the events of March 26: "At about 9:40 a.m. Kathy returned my call. We spoke briefly. Kathy told me that Tom was up and about and had been making phone calls. Tom then picked up the phone and talked to me for about three minutes. He spoke solely about his outrage concerning the rumors that were being spread about his religion and how he should respond to those rumors. I told him I thought it was best to let others stand up for him. He then threatened to kill himself and handed the phone back to Kathy. Seconds later I heard Kathy say, “He shot himself!” Kathy then called 911 on another line while I stayed on the first line with her until the paramedics arrived."
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms is thinking about banning a type of ammunition because it can penetrate bullet-proof vests. Steve Richards, the owner of Steve's Trading Post in Joplin, tells News Talk KZRG how this talk has affected sales of that type of ammo.
"We had about 11 cases, 11,000 rounds and we sold all those rounds almost immediately. Distributors are already out of that product. Even law enforcement is having a difficult time getting that product now."
Richards says he has concerns about the ATF re-defining other types of ammunition. "I think one of the biggest concerns is that it will include other calibers, so it could be almost any hunting ammunition eventually."
Richards says if you don't like the ban, contact your Senator and Congressman...and the ATF is taking public comments until March 16th.