ST. LOUIS ( -- Money is now pouring into Missouri TV stations from groups each trying to get their candidate elected.

One ad running is from a pro-Governor Mike Parson political action committee called Uniting Missouri.

That ad features a man named Rob Dean saying he is a law enforcement officer supporting the current Republican governor and attacking the Democratic candidate, current state auditor Nicole Galloway.

In the ad he states, "I've served on the force for 24 years."

It's true Dean is a current St. Louis County police officer, he's been with the department as a K9 officer since 1998.

He's also listed as a vice president in the County's Fraternal Order of Police.

According to the department, Dean's presence in the ad is not a violation of department policies, but his views do not represent those of the agency.

Dean goes on to state in the ad that, "Governor Parson is fighting hard to protect your families and put violent repeat offenders behind bars."

The ad cites the Governor calling special session of the Missouri General Assembly to address crime.

But Parson did not call a special session on violent crime last year when the number of homicides in St. Louis in 2019 rose to the second-highest level of the decade.

Parson did sign into law a bill that will add prison time to the sentences of repeat violent offenders for crimes like murder, illegally possessing a firearm and armed criminal action.

But to clarify, that bill was signed into law three weeks before the special session started.

In the ad, Dean goes on to say, "and Nicole Galloway, her campaign has been funded by left wing extremists who want to defund our police. These radicals are emboldening criminals and Galloway has been silent while they are doing it."

To be clear, none of that video footage shown in the ad is from Missouri. You can clearly see a New York Police Department car in one video and the "Defund the Police sign" is from Washington DC.

After the nights of rioting and looting, Galloway did release statements condemning the violence and at an event shortly after, she spoke about the issues in the ad.

Galloway said, " I don't support defunding the police, I do not support violence. I think we need to be tough on violence and use the resources at the state level to help protect our communities."

Uniting Missouri, the organization behind the ad, gave News 4 this response to the claims that Galloway's campaign is funded by left wing extremists:

"The group 'Indivisible' is a national leader in the Defund the Police movement. Indivisible has been soliciting campaign contributions for Galloway’s campaign since last year and Galloway was recently a featured speaker at one of their events."

Per their website, the group Indivisible St. Louis is a grassroots group "dedicated to the pursuit of justice, equity, and progress for all." They are a registered chapter of Indivisible and say they are "committed to promoting, encouraging, and facilitating constituent contact with members of Congress to resist the Trump agenda."

As for the campaign funding claim in the ad, News 4 looked into her campaign's latest filings with the Missouri Ethics Commission.

News 4 could find no one connected to any extremist groups, and in fact a large number of her contributions came in small-dollar donations; many in just amounts of 5 to 10 dollars.

So that claim is false.

The ad ends with the statement "Nicole Galloway is liberal on crime."

As to that claim, Galloway's campaign spokesperson stated:

"Auditor Galloway has worked with law enforcement to obtain 63 criminal counts against corrupt public officials - both Democrats and Republicans. Officials who have broken the public trust have gone to jail because of her audits. She's worked closely with prosecutors, sheriffs, the highway patrol, and the FBI to do it. She's also passed a bill to stiffen the felony penalties for corruption. While Auditor Galloway is fighting for reducing gun violence in our state, Governor Parson is making it easier for criminals to access guns to commit crimes."

Uniting Missouri claims Galloway's backing of Cori Bush, the Democratic candidate for Missouri's 1st Congressional District seat, is indicative of her being liberal on crime. 

“By backing Cori Bush, Galloway is endorsing the most extreme anti-law enforcement agenda in Missouri history. According to The New York Times, Bush is pushing changes to our nation’s criminal justice system that include “defunding and dismantling police departments.” 

Bush has been extremely outspoken on this issue, saying “We need to defund the police and make sure that money goes back into the communities that need it.” 

Last month, Uniting Missouri was fined by the Missouri Ethics Commission for failing to disclose the fact the PAC paid for flights Parson took to Washington DC and Florida.

Copyright 2020 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved


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