Kobach Plan for Trump Included Federal Voting Laws Changes
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who is vice chairman of President Donald Trump's commission on election fraud, drafted a proposal for Trump to change federal voter registration laws. A federal court document unsealed Thursday shows the proposal was part of a strategic homeland security plan prepared by Kobach. He was photographed taking the document into a meeting with Trump last November when Trump was president-elect. The portion dealing with federal voter registration laws was not fully visible. U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson also unsealed a second document prepared by Kobach and shared inside his office. It contained the text of the proposed changes to federal law. Kobach was forced to turn over the documents as part of a voting-rights lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union.
Affidavit: Slain Wichita Doctor Stabbed 165 times, Possibly Run Over
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Court records show a slain Kansas psychiatrist was stabbed about 165 times outside his clinic in Wichita last month. The arrest affidavit for the suspect, 21-year-old Umar Dutt, was released Thursday. He's charged with first-degree murder in the September 13 death of Dr. Achutha Reddy at his Holistic Psychiatry Services clinic. The affidavit says a clinic employee reported hearing Reddy calling for help and then seeing Dutt stabbing the psychiatrist. The employee was able to briefly separate the two. The affidavit says Reddy also suffered "blunt force trauma" and may have been run over by a vehicle. Dutt was a patient of Reddy's. Investigators haven't released a possible motive. Dutt is jailed on a $1 million bond. His attorney tells The Wichita Eagle "more evidence will be coming to light."
Missouri Man Charged in Deaths of 2 Kansas City-Area Women
HARRISONVILLE, Mo. (AP) - A Missouri man connected to two Kansas City-area women who disappeared about 10 years apart has been charged with murder in their deaths. Kylr Yust was charged Thursday with two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of abandoning a corpse in the deaths of 17-year-old Kara Kopetsky of Belton and 21-year-old Jessica Runions of Raymore. He is being held on $1 million bond. Yust had long been a suspect in the two deaths. Runions was seen leaving a gathering with Yust before she disappeared in September 2016. Kopetsky had filed a protection order against Yust in April 2007, a month before she went missing after walking out of Belton High School. The remains of Kopetsky and Runions were found in April in a rural area near Belton.
Suspect Leads Police on Two-Hour Chase Through Kansas, Missouri
In an AP story dated October 5 about a police pursuit in Kansas, The Associated Press erroneously reported the chase ended in Kansas. The chase ended in Savannah, Missouri. Here's a corrected version of the story:
ATCHISON, Kan. (AP) — A motorist driving on four flat tires led police on a two-hour pursuit in parts of Kansas and Missouri before his arrest. The News-Press Now reports the chase began early Thursday in northeast Kansas' Atchison County when officers attempted to stop a pickup truck on a warrant with several felony violations. Police say the suspect later drove into neighboring Missouri, through St. Joseph and toward Savannah. St. Joseph police laid a spike strip that blew out all four tires of the suspect's vehicle. Police say the pursuit ended in Savannah, Missouri, where the vehicle veered into a ditch. Officers found drugs and three loaded weapons in the vehicle. The suspect was taken to a hospital because officers believe he ingested several grams of methamphetamine prior to the arrest. Police say the suspect will be jailed after his hospital evaluation.
Kansas Congressional Representatives Support Banning 'Bump Stock' Weapon Accessory
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Kansas U.S. Representatives Kevin Yoder and Lynn Jenkins say they support a federal ban on "bump stocks," which convert semi-automatic rifles to shoot like fully automatic weapons. The two Kansas Republicans issued statements Thursday supporting a ban on the accessory apparently used by a gunman in Las Vegas Sunday to kill and wound more than 550 people. The proposal to ban the "bump stocks" is gaining support from some Republicans in Congress. Yoder, who is expected to seek re-election in Kansas' 3rd District, says individuals shouldn't be able to easily convert legal firearms into automatic weapons. And Jenkins, who is not running again in the 2nd District, says she still supports gun rights but she believes Congress should close the loophole that allows the use of bump stocks and similar devices.
Officers Fatally Shoot Man in Southwest Kansas
GARDEN CITY, Kan. (AP) _ Authorities say a 29-year-old suspect has died after being shot by an officer following an officer-involved shooting in southwest Kansas. Garden City officials say in a news release that deputies were called Thursday to a rural area and a deputy encountered a person armed with a knife. Police say the suspect was wanted by Garden City police and the sheriff's office asked Garden City officers to transport the suspect on those charges. Undersheriff John Andrews says the suspect became aggressive during a standoff with law enforcement. When he advanced toward officers in a threatening manner, officers shot the man. The suspect's name was not released. The KBI is investigating the incident. Garden City police and the Finney County Sheriff's Office are also conducting internal investigations.
Man Who Killed Kansas Detective Sentenced for Carjacking
LEAVENWORTH, Kan. (AP) _ The man who killed a Kansas City, Kansas, police detective last year was sentenced to more time in prison for crimes he committed in another county the same day. The Kansas City Star reports 30-year-old Curtis Ayers was sentenced Thursday to 19 years and five months for carjacking and robbery. Ayers is already serving a life sentence for the shooting death of Detective Brad Lancaster on May 19, 2016, near the Kansas Speedway. After the shooting, Ayers fled and committed several other crimes, including entering a home in Basehor in Leavenworth County and stealing a man's car at gunpoint. He was arrested later that day in Kansas City, Missouri, after a police officer shot Ayers while he was trying another carjacking.
Kansas Teen Expected to be Charged as Adult in Fatal Shooting
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A 17-year-old is expected to be tried in adult court rather than juvenile court in connection to the shooting death of a man at a fast food restaurant. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the teenager was arrested July 4 in connection to the June 26 shooting death of 18-year-old Justice Mitchell. Authorities say he was trying to buy marijuana from Mitchell. The suspect currently is charged with felony first-degree murder and attempted aggravated robbery in juvenile court. Shawnee County District Court Judge Joseph Johnson ruled Wednesday that the district attorney's office has five days to file adult charges. Johnson says the teenager's actions show he desires to be treated as an adult. Johnson says he doesn't believe the juvenile system will be able to help the suspect.
Federal Insurance Program Delay Could Affect Kansas Children
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas officials are considering options if Congress doesn't reauthorize a program that helps provide health insurance for nearly 80,000 children in the state. The Children's Health Insurance Program provides insurance for children in low- and moderate-income, working families. Congress didn't reauthorize funding before the end of the September deadline. Gerald Kratochvil, spokesman for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, told The Topeka Capital-Journal that if the program isn't reauthorized, funds in Kansas won't run out until March 2018. He says about 37,000 Kansas children are enrolled in CHIP, with another 42,000 in a hybrid CHIP-Medicaid program. Republicans pushed a bill extending financing the program through a House committee Wednesday, but partisan conflict over how to pay for it could delay the approval.
Another Teenager Runs for Kansas Governor
HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — A fourth teenager is running for governor in Kansas, entering an already crowded field of nearly 20 candidates. The latest entrant is 17-year-old Dominic Scavuzzo, of Leawood. On Wednesday, he appointed his father as his campaign treasurer. The senior at an all-boy Jesuit school in Kansas City, Missouri, says the race is a "good opportunity" to gain experience. Kansas doesn't set any qualifications to run for governor. Teens from suburban Kansas City and Wichita already have announced plans to run in 2018. Scavuzzo and two other teen candidates are Republicans; the other is a Democrat.
Wichita Students Can Get Permission to Kneel During Anthem
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - The state's largest school district says students won't be disciplined merely for not standing for the Pledge of Allegiance or national anthem. The Wichita Eagle reports that the guidance was issued to principals in the Wichita school district this week after President Donald Trump lashed out at NFL players for not standing during the anthem. The kneeling protests started last year as a statement against the killings of unarmed black men and boys at the hands of police. Gil Alvarez, assistant superintendent of secondary schools in the Wichita district, said that students who object to participating "will be excused upon the student's oral or written request." Alvarez said in an email that students excused from participation "shall silently remain seated (or kneel in quiet reflection) during the exercise by other students."
Kansas Literacy Efforts Get a $27 Million Federal Grant
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - The Kansas Department of Education will use a $27 million federal grant to support literacy programs in the state's schools. The three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Education is one of the largest grants ever received by the agency. The Wichita Eagle reports it will fund the Kansas Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Initiative. It will support literacy programs for students from birth through 12th grade, focusing on English learners and students with disabilities. Districts serving at least 5,000 students may apply individually. Districts serving fewer than 5,000 students may apply as part of a consortium. Eight districts or consortia will be chosen to receive about $1 million a year for three years. The grant also will pay for a program consultant, an administrative assistant and an evaluation team.
Federal Grant Gives St. John Grocery Effort Big Boost
ST. JOHN, Kan. (AP) — A small Kansas town's effort to replace its lone grocery store is getting a big boost from the federal government. A $780,000 Community Economic Development Grant will pay about a quarter of the cost of bringing a new grocery store, pharmacy and gas station to St. John, a town of about 1,300 people in Stafford County. The Hutchinson News reports the award makes officials hopeful they could break ground on the $3 million project this year. The Stafford County Economic Development agency decided to build the grocery, which will include fuel pumps and a pharmacy, after St. John lost its only grocery last year. It will provide fresh food and about 30 jobs. The plan is to lease the grocery to Kingman-based White's Foodliner, which will stock and operate it.