OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) — Democrats believe Republican U.S. Representative Kevin Yoder is vulnerable in his suburban Kansas City district because Donald Trump and the state's GOP governor are seen as unpopular there.They're pouring money into television ads to make the race competitive in its final weeks. Yoder wasn't expected to have much trouble winning re-election in the GOP-leaning Third District. Democratic challenger Jay Sidie is a 59-year-old former commodities trader and a political unknown. He has trailed badly in fundraising and began the month with less than $78,000 in campaign cash. Yoder began October with $1.8 million.But the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee committed to spending $1 million on TV ads for Sidie in the three weeks before the Nov. 8 election. A Republican super-PAC is promising to spend $800,000 to boost Yoder.
Greensburg Prepares to Commemorate 10-Year Tornado Anniversary
GREENSBURG, Kan. (AP) — The city of Greensburg is deep into planning for a May celebration to mark the 10-year anniversary of a tornado that nearly wiped the town off the map.The May 4, 2007, tornado destroyed 95 percent of the town and killed 11 people. The celebration will focus mostly on what has been achieved since then and the city's plans for the future.The Hutchinson News reports that residents formed committees in December 2015 to plan the celebration. One of the groups focused on public art. That committee agreed to install three stainless-steel sculptures along Main Street. Committee member Kerri Ulrich says the idea was to install art that complements the message of survival and hope.Grants will help pay for the artwork.
Seven Rescued In Overland Park Fire
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) — Firefighters have rescued seven people, including four children, from a burning apartment building in suburban Kansas City.The fire at an Overland Park apartment building started early Saturday. The fire department says that when the first crews arrived, residents told them there were residents trapped in the building The fire department says three adults and four children were rescued from second-story balconies. No injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Former Driving Teacher Faces Charges
EMPORIA, Kan. (AP) — A former Emporia driving school instructor faces charges accusing him of sexually abusing a teenager. The Emporia Gazette reports that Robert L. Jones of Emporia was charged this week in Lyon County court with aggravated sexual battery of a 16-year-old. The criminal complaint says the alleged crime occurred in August. Jones has been fired from his position as director of an Emporia driving school, which was has also been shut down. Jones' next court appearance is scheduled for Nov. 14. A phone number for a lawyer listed for Jones rang unanswered Saturday.
Attempted Murder Charged in Abandoned Baby Case
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A 27-year-old man faces charges after his 9-month-old stepdaughter was abandoned in Lawrence. The Kansas City Star reports that Marquis Young is charged in Douglas County with attempted first-degree murder and child abuse. He is also accused of violating his probation. Police said Young was the stepfather of a 9-month-old girl found abandoned the morning of July 7 at an apartment complex in Lawrence. The baby spent almost two weeks in the hospital before she was released into state custody.Young is being held on a $100,000 bond. His next court appearance is Oct. 27.
Leader of Militia Group Will Remain Jailed While Awaiting Trial
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — The defense attorney for one of three men accused of plotting to attack Somali immigrants in western Kansas says his client was only preparing to defend himself against massive social upheaval.The comments came during a court hearing Friday for 47-year-old Patrick Stein from Wright, Kansas, whom prosecutors say was the leader of a militia group called "The Crusaders." U.S. Magistrate Judge Gwynne Birzer ruled that Stein would remain in jail while he awaits trial. Birzer said Stein poses a "grave danger." Stein and two other militia members are accused of plotting to bomb an apartment complex in the western Kansas meat packing town of Garden City. Stein pleaded not guilty to conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction. Defense attorney Ed Robinson says his client was led by the government's paid informant and an FBI undercover agent.
Eighty-Five People Treated Following Chemical Spill
ATCHISON, Kan. (AP) — At least 85 people sought medical attention after a chemical spill at a distilling plant that released a noxious cloud in northeast Kansas.The Kansas Department of Emergency Management says the cloud occurred Friday morning when two chemicals were mistakenly combined at the MGP Ingredients plant in Atchison. The department says people were allowed back into their homes after the cloud dissipated a few hours later. Atchison Hospital spokeswoman T.C. Roberts says about 67 people sought care at the hospital's emergency room for upper respiratory discomfort. Roberts says one person remained in intensive care Friday afternoon. About 18 others sought care at a hospital in nearby St. Joseph, Missouri. MGP produces premium distilled spirits. It employs about 300 people at the Atchison plant, about 50 miles from Kansas City.
Kansas Supreme Court Upholds Kleypas Death Sentence
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' highest court has upheld the death sentence of a man convicted of killing a college student 20 years ago.The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday let stand Gary Kleypas' death sentence in the 1996 rape and stabbing death of 20-year-old Pittsburg State University student Carrie Williams. The court did throw out Kleypas' conviction of attempted rape and ordered him re-sentenced for aggravated burglary. Kleypas was the first person to be sentenced to death in Kansas after it reinstated capital punishment in 1994. Kansas hasn't executed anyone in more than 50 years, although 10 men are on the state's death row.