ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 23-year-old man faces first-degree murder charges in the deaths of his ex-girlfriend, her mother and his ten-month-old son. Police say Eric Lawson shot 22-year-old Breiana Ray and 50-year-old Gwendolyn Ray to death on Saturday. After the shooting, Lawson allegedly set a fire before leaving two children locked in an apartment. His son died and a three-year-old girl was critically injured.

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities are investigating after a man was struck and killed by a MetroLink train in St. Louis. Police say the man was walking along the tracks Saturday night when he was hit. The name of the 26-year-old victim has not been released.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri House committee is backing legislation that would let young drivers behind the wheel if they’re supervised by an older friend or relative. Teens can drive if they’re at least 15, have temporary permits and have a parent, grandparent, legal guardian or driving instructor along as a passenger. The measure would expand the list of acceptable supervisors to include licensed drivers who are at least 25 and have received written permission from the teen’s parent.

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A native Missouri plant that’s touted for its healing properties will be the focus of an international symposium at the University of Missouri. The First International Symposium on Elderberry will be held next June during the plant’s peak flowering season. The berry is high in antioxidants and is being studied for its potential to fight prostate cancer.

HANNIBAL, Mo. (AP) – Hannibal-LaGrange University has picked its new president. Forty-three-year-old Anthony Allen has been selected to lead the Baptist university. Allen replaces Dr. Woodrow Burt, who is retiring after 17 years on the job.

SIKESTON, Mo. (AP) – A trailer containing hydrochloric acid has exploded at a Sikeston power plant. Police say no injuries were reported in yesterday morning’s blast at the Sikeston Board of Municipal Utilities power plant. About 7,500 gallons of the acid spilled after the explosion and the cleanup is expected to take several days.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Supporters of raising Missouri’s minimum wage and limiting payday loans have submitted petitions to get the measures on the November ballot. The minimum wage proposal would boost Missouri’s minimum pay to $8.25 an hour starting 2013, with an annual cost-of living adjustment in subsequent years. Under the payday loan proposal, annual rates on short-term loans would be capped at 36 percent.

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Columbia area residents and officials have started developing recommendations for cleaning up a local waterway. The Environmental Protection Agency and the state agreed in March to let Boone County and University of Missouri officials take incremental steps toward reducing pollution in the creek that cuts through Columbia.

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. (AP) — A northwest Missouri family that has had serious health and financial problems is hoping their newly renovated home provided by a county program will give them some sanctuary.  Kristie Smith and her daughter, Katrena, gave tours of the home in Independence on Thursday. It underwent an $85,000 upgrade thanks to a program started in Jackson County in 2008.  Smith’s husband died in 2008 of lymphoma. She had brain surgery in 2009 after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. And in 2010, Katrena was diagnosed with leukemia.  Smith says the new home gives her hope.