Car Hits Woman as She Attempts to Rescue Ducklings
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Police are urging people to not follow the lead of a Wichita woman who was struck by a car after stepping onto a street in an attempt to rescue a line of ducklings. The Wichita Eagle reports that the 57-year-old woman was treated at a hospital earlier this month and released. Police also ticketed her for failing to yield to a vehicle in the roadway. Some of the ducklings didn't survive. Officer Charley Davidson says that most of the time cars will stop for animals in the street or that the animals will scurry off. But in cases where the animals remain in the street, he urged people to call police and say "it's causing traffic problems." Davidson says police can get the wildlife off the road safely.
Teen's Drowning in Douglas County Lake Ruled Accidental
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A coroner says the February drowning of a teenager at Kansas' Douglas State Fishing Lake was accidental. The Lawrence Journal-World reports at Dr. Altaf Hossain's recently released report found that 18-year-old Cameron Kirchner was not intoxicated with drugs or alcohol at the time of this death. Authorities have said that Kirchner and a 17-year-old boy spilled into the lake the evening of February 18th when the boat they were rowing overturned. The younger teenager resurfaced and survived. Kirchner's body was found four days later.
Court Lets Stand Inmate's Pleas in Topeka Double Killing
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Supreme Court has rejected an inmate's bid to withdraw his no-contest pleas in a 2003 attack that killed two women and wounded a third. This week's ruling rejected 44-year-old King Phillip Amman Reu-El's claims that a Shawnee County judge misinformed him about appellate rights that would be waived by making the pleas. Amman Reu-El was convicted in 2005 of capital murder and other charges in the Topeka shooting deaths, and he was sentenced to death. Those convictions were overturned, and Reu-El entered his no-contest pleas at retrial. He's now serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for 25 years, as well as a consecutive term of nearly 14 years for attempted murder. Amman Reu-El changed his name from Phillip Cheatham Jr. while awaiting the retrial.
Kansas Lawmakers to Reopen Debate over Guns at Hospitals
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas legislators are preparing to reopen a debate over keeping concealed guns out of those hospitals and other health care facilities. They're driven by a desire to avoid spending millions of dollars on new security at state hospitals. The Senate plans to debate a concealed carry bill next week. Gun-rights groups are pushing hard to narrow the legislation so that it applies to secured areas within hospitals. But Republican legislative leaders also face pressure from other lawmakers and advocates who want to keep concealed guns off of university campuses as well. Existing law says universities, state and other public hospitals, mental health centers, some nursing homes and other facilities must allow concealed weapons in their buildings starting in July unless they provide "adequate" security such as guards or metal detectors.
Small-town Kansas Grocery Gets New Life after Remodel
LITTLE RIVER, Kan. (AP) — A small-town grocery store in Kansas has been revitalized after a recent $200,000 remodel. The Hutchinson News reports that the city of Little River purchased the building that houses the Garden of Eden grocery store and leased it back to the owners. The city council then secured a community grant to help fund the remodel and update the store's outdated coolers and freezers. The remodel also included a new ceiling with improved lighting, new heating and air conditioning, and refurbished wooden floors. David and Debra Nelson have owned the only grocery store in the town of 600 people for the past 12 years. Marci Penner, director of the Kansas Sampler Foundation, says many communities around the state are doing similar things to ensure the future of community grocery stores.
Searchers Find Body of Missing 82-year-old in Kansas River
EL DORADO, Kan. (AP) — Authorities in southern Kansas' Butler County say the body of an 82-year-old man who went missing in the Walnut River has been found. Sheriff's officials say Ramon Criss was found dead yesterday (SAT) morning about a half mile from where the tractor he was riding was overturned on a low-water bridge he had been trying to clear of debris. The search for Criss had begun Friday afternoon. Funeral arrangements are pending.