2 Arrested in Death of Pittsburg State Student
PITTSBURG, Kan. (AP) — Two suspects are jailed in the death of a Pittsburg State University student. The 21- and 24-year-old suspects were arrested Friday on suspicion of first-degree murder in the death of 20-year-old Taylor C. Thomas and several other felonies. The Joplin Globe reports that both suspects are from Pittsburg. An autopsy showed that Thomas died of a single gunshot wound. He was a junior at Pittsburg State majoring in mechanical engineering technology. Officers responding to a disturbance call at an off-campus home where Thomas lived found him wounded around 2 a.m. Thursday. He was pronounced dead at Via Christi Hospital. Police Major Brent Narges says Thomas was shot while inside the home.
Topeka Driver Was Drunk in Deadly March Crash
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An autopsy report says a driver was drunk in a crash that killed him and a 13-month-old girl. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that Shawnee County District Court Clerk Angela Callahan's office released the autopsy report Friday at the newspaper's request. It says 33-year-old Brian Lee Riley, of Topeka, had a blood-alcohol level of more than twice the legal limit when the car he was driving struck a culvert and rolled. The crash happened in March as Riley was returning from an auto parts store. Riley died at the scene, and 13 -month-old Kylynn Gunter died nine days later. She was in a child safety seat, but didn't appear to have been properly restrained. The girl's 12-year-old sister survived. Authorities said Riley was an acquaintance of the children's mother.
Victims' Families Oppose 2 Judge's Retention
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Relatives of four people slain 14 years ago in a Wichita field have formed an organization opposing the retention of two of the Kansas Supreme Court justices who overturned the killers' death sentences. The Wichita Eagle reports that Kansans for Justice wants voters to remove justices Lee Johnson and Eric Rosen from the court in November. They think the court botched Jonathan and Reginald Carr's appeal when it ruled that the brothers should have had separate sentencing hearings. Authorities said the Carr brothers broke into a Wichita home, sexually assaulted some of the victims and forced them to withdraw money from ATMs before shooting them. One of the five people shot survived and went for help. Johnson and Rosen are the only court members up for retention this year.
Court Orders Reinstatement of Kansas Councilman
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An appeals court has ruled that a suburban Kansas City councilman was improperly kicked out of office for allowing a homeless friend to spend four nights in City Hall. The Kansas City Star reports that the Kansas Court of Appeals ruled Friday that Prairie Village councilman David Morrison should be reinstated. Morrison says the ruling is the best news he's had had in a long time. A Johnson County judge ordered Morrison to vacate his seat last October after Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe's office filed an ouster motion. Howe says his office will ask the Kansas Supreme Court to review the decision. Prairie Village Mayor Ron Shaffer says the city will abide by whatever the final decision is.
WWII Aircraft Will Leave Topeka for Restoration
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Michigan man has bought a World War Two plane that has been housed at a Topeka museum for the past 20 years. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that the buyer plans to make the O-46 aircraft fit to fly again. The plane recently was moved from the Combat Air Museum to the nearby American Flight Museum hangar at the Topeka Regional complex. Dan Stephens of the American Flight Museum says the new owner is sending a team to Topeka to disassemble the plane so it can be hauled to Michigan for restoration. Stephens says the plane's frame is in "terrific shape." But he says its 1,000-horsepower radial engine has seized up and will have to be rebuilt, a process that likely will take two to three years.