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Headlines for Sunday, May 22, 2016

Here's a look at area news headlines from the Associated Press.

Missouri Patrol Trooper, Suspect Injured in Shooting at Kansas City Casino

NORTH KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri State Highway Patrol trooper and a suspect he was trying to arrest are hospitalized with gunshot wounds after a confrontation at a casino parking garage.  The patrol says in a news release that two troopers were investigating a report of a suspicious person Friday night at Harrah's Casino when they found the 35-year-old suspect from Kansas City at Harrah's Casino.  A preliminary investigation indicates the suspect resisted arrest. The patrol says when the man shot one of the troopers, the other trooper shot the suspect.  The suspect is hospitalized Saturday with serious injuries. The trooper, a 26-year patrol veteran, suffered moderate injuries. The second trooper was not injured.  The patrol says the vehicle the suspect was standing next to in the parking garage had been stolen.


Wichita Protest Anniversary Shows Splintered Anti-Abortion Movement

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Protesters will come to Wichita this summer for the 25th anniversary of the tumultuous anti-abortion event called the Summer of Mercy.  But since 1991, the broader anti-abortion movement has splintered into disaffected factions and its strategies have evolved with the shifting political and legal landscape.  Growing restrictions placed by state legislatures on abortion clinics culminated this week with an Oklahoma bill that would have effectively banned abortions, though it was vetoed. And a thwarted move in Congress to strip federal funds from Planned Parenthood has spawned similar efforts in conservative states.  The current leader of Operation Rescue, which organized the 1991 event, says the group is distancing itself from the July 16-23 event because of the rhetoric that other anti-abortion groups use. Troy Newman also says that the group has accomplished more with politics than protests.


Kansas Drought-Free for First Time in 6 Years

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — For the first time in nearly six years, Kansas is officially considered drought-free.  The Hutchinson News reports the current U.S. Drought Monitor map of Kansas says no drought exists in the state for the first time since July 13, 2010.  One of the worst droughts in the state's history began in the summer of 2010. The drought fluctuated but as late as April 12, 97 percent of Kansas showed some drought conditions.  Rains in April and May helped wipe out the last of the drought — at least for now. Rainfall amounts in those months included more than 4 inches in Salina and Garden City and 7.46 inches in Hays.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the 2011 and 2012 droughts cost farmers nearly $5 billion in crop losses.


Kansas Appeals Order to Register Thousands of Voters

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Secretary of State Kris Kobach has asked a federal appeals court to stay a judge's order to add to voting rolls for federal elections thousands of Kansans who did not provide proof of citizenship when registering to vote at motor vehicle offices.  The Kansas Republican argued in a filing Friday to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals that the process would be administratively burdensome and would involve thousands of hours of work by election officials.  U.S. District Judge Julie Robinson issued the preliminary injunction Tuesday after finding more than 18,000 eligible voters would be disenfranchised in the November federal election under the Kansas law. She put her order on hold until May 31 so the state could appeal.  Kobach is asking for a stay while it appeals the order.


Kansas Regents Groups Study Title IX, Increasing College Degrees

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Board of Regents has approved a working group to study how the state's universities respond to sexual violence and other sex-based discrimination issues. A separate group will study how to find and enroll Kansans with some college credits but no degree.  The Lawrence Journal-World reports  that the regents approved both groups during meetings this week.  The first group will involve university Title IX coordinators working together to determine the best practices for investigating and resolving cases of sexual harassment and sex-based discrimination on college campuses.  The second group will explore organizing a statewide initiative to persuade Kansans with some college but no diploma to return to higher education to complete a certificate or degree.


Historical Society to Return Remains to Kansas Tribes

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas State Historical Society plans to return human remains excavated from Native American burial sites in Kansas to two tribes.  The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that the remains of two people dug up in Pottawatomie County were donated to the historical society in 1881 by a private collector. In the years since, the historical society has received Native American remains from other counties.  Robert Hoard, a state archaeologist, wrote in April that the remains of 17 individuals and 148 burial objects belong to the Kaw Nation. He also determined remains of at least one person, along with glass beads and pottery found in 1916 or 1917 in Atchison County, belonged to the Kickapoo tribe.  Unless other tribes object during a public comment period, the remains will become the tribes' property.


Missouri Wants Seek Death for Mexican National Accused in Kansas Killings

MONTGOMERY CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri prosecutors plan to pursue the death penalty for a Mexican national in the shooting death of a man a day after he allegedly killed four people in Kansas.  Prosecutors in Montgomery County west of St. Louis submitted court papers Friday saying they will seek capital punishment for Pablo Serrano-Vitorino if he's convicted of first-degree murder in the March 8 shooting death of Randy Nordman at that man's New Florence home.  A judge last week ordered Serrano-Vitorino to stand trial in that case. Arraignment is scheduled for June 1.  Serrano-Vitorino also is accused in Kansas of killing a Kansas City, Kansas, neighbor and three other men at the neighbor's home on March 7.  An attorney for Serrano-Vitorino did not return a phone call seeking comment Friday.


Man Convicted of Setting Fire That Killed Daughter, Friend

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A suburban Kansas City man has been convicted of setting a house fire that killed his 14-month-old daughter and an adult.  A Jackson County jury on Friday found 35-year-old Stephen Elijah of Grandview guilty of two counts of involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child. Elijah was acquitted of an arson charge in the September 2014 fire.  The blaze killed 14-month-old Se'Asia Elijah and 37-year-old Anika Hobley of Kansas City. Two girls in the home escaped and alerted a neighbor.  When fire crews arrived, they found Elijah trying to put out the fire with a garden hose. He told police when he poured gasoline on a fire that was about to go out, the gas can exploded. He threw the can against a wall and the fire spread.


Kansas Man Charged with Manslaughter over Deadly Wreck

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A Wichita, Kansas, man is accused of recklessly causing the crash-related deaths of two clients of an organization that helps adults with developmental disabilities.  Prosecutors in Sedgwick County charged 56-year-old Bret Blevins on Friday with two counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the May 6 wreck. He's also charged with aggravated battery, leaving an accident scene and driving with a suspended or canceled license.  Authorities say Blevins was driving a borrowed Cadillac sport utility vehicle when he ran through a stop sign and hit a van occupied by three residents and two employees of the Starkey organization.  Two of the residents, 46-year-old Dirk MacMillian and 25-year-old Dusty Atterbery, were killed.  It was not immediately clear Friday if Blevins has an attorney.


Joplin Tornado, Five Years Later; Survivors Look Back

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A sky-darkening storm was working its way into southwest Missouri around dinnertime on a Sunday evening, zeroing in on the city of Joplin.  Will Norton was among 400 graduates of Joplin High School emerging from their commencement ceremony. Liz Easton was watering plants in her yard, while Mark Lindquist was tending to residents of the group home where he worked. About 10 miles away, the county coroner, Rob Chappel, was at home.  Forecasters knew the storm's potential was fierce and gave early warnings. Then, as storm sirens blared, one of the nation's deadliest tornados hit — leveling a miles-long swath of Joplin on May 22, 2011. The storm was eventually blamed for 161 deaths.


Museum Designed to Honor Unsung Heroes to Open in Kansas

FORT SCOTT, Kan. (AP) — A new southeast Kansas museum is designed to honor people who have taken extraordinary actions to help others. The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes opens Tuesday in Fort Scott. The 6,000-square-foot museum replaces a smaller exhibit gallery that opened in 2007 in the city's downtown. The new high-tech facility includes a 48-seat theater and a conference room.  People honored in the museum have been the subjects of student research projects. They include Irena Sendler, who rescued more than 2,500 Jewish children during WWII. Also honored are a white man and woman who were teens when they befriended black students who were integrating a Little Rock, Arkansas, high school at the height of the civil rights movement.  The Milken Family Foundation also is known for honoring educators with $25,000 checks.  Check out #MyKPR's report on this new museum!


Hospital Sues Health Agency over Hepatitis C Outbreak

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Exeter Hospital has filed another lawsuit in hopes of getting others to pay for settlements it reached after a traveling medical technician infected patients with hepatitis C.  David Kwiatkowski is serving 39 years in prison for stealing painkillers and replacing them with saline-filled syringes tainted with his blood. Despite being fired repeatedly over drug allegations, he had worked as a cardiac technologist in seven states - including Kansas - before being hired in New Hampshire in 2011.  Since then, Exeter Hospital has settled dozens of lawsuits with infected patients and nearly 200 people who were not infected but claimed some harm from the outbreak. It sued a medical staffing agency and an accreditation organization two years ago, and earlier this month, filed a new lawsuit against a company that connects hospitals to staffing agencies.


Restored Vintage World War II Bomber Certified to Fly

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A restored World War II aircraft might be flying over Kansas in the next few weeks.  The Federal Aviation Administration on Friday awarded a certificate of airworthiness for the B-29 bomber known as "Doc" to a nonprofit group based in Wichita that has worked for 16 years to restore it.  The Wichita Eagle reports the certificate is one of the final hurdles to getting the plane off the ground. Jeff Turner, of the nonprofit group Doc's Friends, says the plane could be in the air by the end of summer. The group will ask permission to operate the bomber out of McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita.  Turner, the former CEO of Spirit AeroSystems, estimates 350,000 volunteer hours were contributed to the restoration since it began in 1987.


Costa Rican President: Sovereign Borders Turn Complex

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — Costa Rica's president says during a Kansas speech that massive migrations due to terrorism and organized crime are making national security and border control for countries complex.  The Manhattan Mercury reports that Luis Guillermo Solis offered that assessment Thursday night as the featured speaker of the Landon Lecture series at Kansas State University.  Solis says that it once was easy to talk of borders "as a definitive measure of national security." But he says that the daily challenges he faces as president are resolved not within Costa Rica, but in such far-flung places as Brussels, New York and Washington.  



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