72-year-old Topeka Woman Dies in Fire
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A 72-year-old Topeka woman has been identified as the victim of a fatal mobile home fire earlier this week. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the Shawnee County coroner's office determined Marjorie Shaffer died of smoke inhalation in the Wednesday morning blaze. Firefighters were called to the residence near the south end of the mobile home park and found heavy smoke and flames coming from the home. They pulled Shaffer out of the residence but efforts to revive her failed and she was pronounced dead at the scene. A neighbor said he saw Shaffer lying on a hallway floor but was unable to get to her because of the heat and smoke. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
Kansas Man Accused of Killing Girlfriend's Fetus
WAKEENEY, Kan. (AP) — A 30-year-old northwest Kansas man is accused of killing his girlfriend's unborn child by crushing an abortion-causing medication over a pancake she ate. The Salina Journal reports 30-year-old Scott Bollig of WaKeeney was bound over for trial after a two-day preliminary hearing this week on charges of first-degree murder and aggravated battery. Prosecutors say that after Naomi Abbott lost her baby on Jan. 31, doctors found traces of mifepristone in the woman's blood. WaKeeney Police Chief Terry Eberle testified on Thursday that Bollig admitted lacing food he served to Abbott with an abortion-inducing drug he bought over the Internet. Bollig's attorney questioned whether investigators had coerced Bollig into making those statements, or if they had properly read him his rights.
4 Measles Cases Traced to Restaurant
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Four new Kansas measles cases have been traced to a Wichita restaurant where one employee might have picked up the virus during a recent outbreak in the Kansas City metropolitan area. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment is urging anyone who ate at Sal's Japanese Steakhouse on Kellogg Drive on various dates in June and July and developed symptoms to call their doctor. A KDHE news release says three employees at the steakhouse and an unvaccinated infant who was exposed to the virus at the restaurant became infected. Measles cases have been rare in the U.S. since indigenous measles were declared eliminated in the country in 2000. KDHE says there has been a resurgence in cases this year, with 554 confirmed in 20 states through July 3.
Koch Industries Backs Incumbent in Home District
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A bitterly contested Republican congressional race unfolding in south-central Kansas is testing the political influence of big corporate money in the backyard of two billionaire brothers who have poured millions into races across the nation. The 4th District GOP primary Aug. 5 pits U.S. Rep. Mike Pompeo of Wichita against the popular conservative Republican who previously held that position. Former congressman Todd Tiahrt, also from Wichita, gave up the House seat in 2010 in an unsuccessful primary run for the U.S. Senate. Tiahrt's primary challenge comes in the home district of Charles and David Koch, who have sent much of their personal fortunes to a network of conservative organizations nationwide. Koch Industries' employee political action committee, KochPAC, supports Pompeo and has given him the maximum allowable amount.
Work Begins on Salina Research Center
SALINA, Kan. (AP) — Construction is underway in Salina on a new research center devoted to the science of moving and mixing bulk solids such as pellets, granules, powder and grain.The Salina Journal reports the Kansas State University Bulk Solids Innovation Center will be among only a few in the world. It's a partnership of the city, the university and two Salina-based companies that design and make equipment for handling bulk materials. Speakers at Thursday's groundbreaking for the 17,000-square-foot building said they've already heard interest from some of the nation's largest manufacturers in having their problems researched at the center. Such problems could occur at a bread factory that mixes flour, yeast, salt and sugar but is having trouble with the flow of sugar from a hopper.