ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – St. Louis County lawyers failed to show up to court Wednesday as the family of a 6-year-old who drowned continued its demands for video of their son’s tragedy.
FOX 2 was the only media representative in the courtroom when the judge demanded action. More than 100 days have passed since T.J. Mister drowned in the Kennedy Recreation Center pool.
Time has not softened the pain for T.J.’s parents, Olga and Travone. In some ways, they say it’s more painful today because of a lack of answers from St. Louis County.
“They wouldn’t talk to us at all, until we got our lawyers involved, and now they’re pulling information out of them,” Olga said last month.
Such as a lifeguard audit, which FOX 2 also obtained through MO’s Sunshine Law. It exposed the recreation center for being short one lifeguard on that tragic day, while also lacking life-saving equipment. The audit also references video of the drowning and life-saving attempts, video the Mister family’s lawyers say has not been turned over.
They filed a motion to compel to get the county to turn over evidence. But St. Louis County lawyers did not show up to Wednesday’s hearing for the judge to hear arguments.
In open court, Judge Richard Stewart asked for someone to get a county lawyer on the phone. St. Louis County then sent over an assistant attorney, who said she was not prepared to make an argument against the motion to compel, and that she was only prepared to ask for a delay. The judge demanded the main attorney in charge to get on the phone with him in chambers.
The county is asking for a delay until December, but the judge said he’s unwilling to wait that long and demanded they return to court on Monday, Nov. 7. T.J.’s family remains determined to save the next family from their pain.