Victims’ families look to newest St. Louis Circuit Attorney for swift justice, fairness in office

With newly appointed Circuit Attorney Gabriel Gore, St. Louis residents are keeping a close eye on how his leadership will impact those seeking justice.
Published: May. 19, 2023 at 5:36 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - With newly appointed Circuit Attorney Gabriel Gore now taking over in the stead of Kim Gardner, St. Louis residents are keeping a close eye on how his leadership will impact those continuing to seek justice through the courts.

“I want justice for my son as well as others that need justice for their families,” said Lana Morris.

Morris is 29-year-old Brandon Scott’s mother. He was killed near the Gateway Arch grounds in September 2021.

“For him not to be here anymore, it’s such a shame. And it was senseless how he just left this earth,” said Morris.

The trial for one her son’s accused killers was set to begin this past April, but it was pushed back to June 5th after no one from former Circuit Attorney Gardner’s office appeared in court for the hearing.

Today, Morris spoke with News 4 over the phone as Governor Mike Parson announced Gore would be the city’s news Circuit Attorney following Gardner’s resignation this week.

“I was very excited and happy that she did resign,” said Morris. “But I didn’t like the fact is that she left under the situation where it’s a lot of confusion and a lot of miscommunications in that office where no one is there to prosecute the cases.”

Now, Scott’s family turns to see what Gore will achieve for them and families seeking justice on both sides of the judicial system.

“We want to get that process where people are not sitting in jail where they’re not being incarcerated wondering what’s [going to] happen,” said Governor Parson. “To have people months and months just be sitting incarcerated because the judicial system don’t do their job is unacceptable. And we’ve got to change the way we do that, and I think this is beginning of that change.”

“I applaud [Gore] to step up and try to do everything he can for the citizens of St. Louis,” said Morris.

Community activist Reverend Darryl Gray says they will be watching to see if he can prove to the citizen of St. Louis he is capable of balancing this role

“I’m pro-victim. I’m pro victim’s families. If Mr. Gore can go in and bring some relief to these families, then that has to be a priority,” said Gray. “Families of victims and victims’ families should not have to wait two and three years to get justice. But again, we can’t rush justice for the sake of ‘closure’ either.”

Gray remains skeptical of the Governor’s pick, citing concerns he chose a circuit attorney that does not represent the citizens of St. Louis.

“We saw Judge [Paula] Bryant as being the choice of the people. We saw Judge [Michael] Noble as being the choice of the judges, and we saw Gabe as being the choice of the prosecutors,” said Gray. “Be it the AG’s office or the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the business community.”

Gray added, “Do we have to give Mr. Gore a chance? Sure, we do. Do we hope that he’ll prove us wrong? Sure, we do. But are we optimistic? No, we’re not.”

Families like Morris, however, remain more optimistic.

“I hope that he be fair to the citizens of St. Louis and that he really gets in there and have the prosecutors do their job,” said Morris. “Be fair to the victims and have them to really do their job and not just sit in that office.”