Claycomo community alleges shooting could have been prevented

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CLAYCOMO, Mo. --  Some are saying more police officers could have prevented a double shooting here last week. Citizens vented their frustrations at a village trustee meeting.

According to court documents, the suspect, Frank Littrell, called Claycomo police shortly before the shooting and asked for a police officer to be at his father's business so that he could retrieve some property.

Claycomo did not send an officer because only one was on duty at the time, and that officer was busy on another call.

Raymond Littrell's mechanic's garage is where the shootings later happened. The business has been part of the Claycomo community for 40 years.

Angry citizens told village trustees last night that if an officer had responded to the suspect's request, the shooting might not have happened.

Claycomo Public Safety Director Jack Foster concedes that he would like to have two officers on the streets at all times, but doesn't know that would have made a difference in this case.

"I understand there were some people in the village upset about this tragic incident," Foster said. "I certainly understand their feelings. There's no way we could have anticipated that this tragic incident occurred. I don't think from the call received here at city hall, there was any indication there would be any type of violence."

Foster says he will soon implement a staff restructuring plan that will ensure there are always two officers on duty in Claycomo.

A budget shortfall of $300,000 resulted in two police officers and a firefighter position being cut this year.

If the caller had indicated there might be trouble, Foster says police would have responded to the garage before the shooting.

Foster also says a mutual aid request made sure that there were plenty of law enforcement officers at the shooting scene. He says that sort of cooperation is what resulted in first-degree murder charges being filed so quickly against Frank Littrell.

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15 comments

  • Ja'

    Prayers for the families involved in that mess but I have to say the Claycomo police dept is a joke & it’s common knowledge all around. They’re racist & unreliable. They need to just let Clay Cty take that town over.

  • T

    They always have plenty of police to catch the speeders, though. Everyone knows you don’t speed through there. Why would someone request the police’s presence unless they anticipated trouble? Duh. If you request a cop to be somewhere there is obviously a problem!!!

  • s

    The officers aren’t racist hince 2 black officers. The board wants to eliminate their only means of that village making money ( taking the officers off the highway). I applaud the new public safety director. Sounds like he knows how to run an agency. Response times of the officers responding to calls even if their on jurisdictional highways, 2 min tops. Regardless if they are on a highway or in the city, their response time is better than waiting on county to respond when deputy’s are mainly in the county patrolling. No one can anticipate an active shooters intensions…. No one!!!!! If there was an officer available to respond, the shooter very well would’ve opened fire on his family and the officer. The only thing that the officer could’ve done is shoot the active shooter. No one knows the outcome either. We can all state “what if’s!” Bottom line is when an agency is so broke and cuts their staff, things like this unfortunate instance can occur.

  • D. B.

    My sympathy goes out to the Litrell’s. The fact that the former police and fire chief along with Trustee Taylor are politicizing this tragedy is deplorable. Ray was a supporter of cuts to the budget, thats what he campaigned on last year. The Litrell’s shouldn’t have to see their father and grandfathers death be used this way. Claycomo is a great town and we support Director Foster, and pray for Ray and his daughter.

  • Wacthdog

    The public safety officer position is a joke,you take officers off the street to hire a man to just sit behind a desk all day. And a claycomo board member made a threat against a resident in a meeting last month,how is that good government.

  • Watchdog

    Trustee Taylor is not using this for political gain,she is not running for another term due health reasons.and the fire and police chief has had to clean up the mess made by the former chief jones

    • D. B.

      i said she POLITICIZED the issue, which she did. you don’t have to be running for office to politicize an issue. she believes we should run the village into bankruptcy and she used this mans death to make her point.

    • D. B.

      i know she has health problems, but funny how she will be at the former police and fire chiefs store up in excelsior the day of a board meeting but be too sick to show up at the meeting

  • Jesus Kornis III

    All I ever see Claycomo Police doing is sitting on the side of the highway (Where the least amount of crime is happening). I have never had a run in with them, but I can certainly see by their tactics that they are more concerned with racking up tickets rather than protecting the community. I have heard from numerous individuals that they are on the same “ticket racker” agenda as communities such as Mosby, Pleasant Valley, and Randolph.

  • Viola Patience Bowman

    I have known Ray and his daughter (and son) for as long as I can remember, Ray was a good man, he did help people in need he and his daughter did not deserve this, police presence I really don’t think would have stopped what was going to happen. All I can say is I pray our court system does justice and I pray for the rest of the family. R.I.P. may the speedways be ready for you.