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Headlines for Sunday, September 28, 2014


Wolf Creek Seeks More Time to Fix Faulty Sensor

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Wolf Creek nuclear power plant is asking federal regulators for more time to replace a faulty sensor unit that provides an early warning of reactor coolant leaks. The Wichita Eagle reports that normally the plant would have 30 days to make the fix. But because the repair involves shutting down the plant, operators want to wait until a scheduled shutdown at the end of February. An unscheduled two- to three-day shutdown would cost customers more than $1 million. Problems began on August 31st when the sensor unit began to fail, providing false indications of a leak. Records show the sensor quit altogether on September 3rd after operators reset it five times in three days.


Kansas' Community Colleges Lose Enrollment

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Newly released numbers show enrollment has dipped at Kansas' community colleges while it increased at technical schools and public universities. The Lawrence Journal-World reports that the Kansas Board of Regents released preliminary figures Friday. According to the report, 184,403 students were enrolled in state universities, community colleges and technical schools. That is a less than 1 percent decrease from the fall of 2013. The slight drop came as community colleges saw a 4.34 percent enrollment decrease. Meanwhile, enrollment was up 1.47 percent at the six regents' universities and 6.32 percent at technical schools. Kansas Board of Regents president and chief executive officer Andy Tompkins says people are heading back to work instead of seeking additional education and training at the state's community colleges.


Man Charged with Killing Dodge City Woman

DODGE CITY, Kan. (AP) — A 26-year-old man who was arrested after a police chase has been charged with killing a Dodge City woman. The Dodge City Daily Globe reports that the Ford County prosecutor charged Victor Gutierrez on Friday with first-degree murder in the death of 30-year-old Natasha Pruitt and three other felonies. Dodge City police and the Ford County Sheriff's Department were called to a Dodge City home Monday afternoon on a report of an injured person. Officers say they found Pruitt dead at the home. After authorities issued an all-points bulletin, Gutierrez was arrested Monday night. Gutierrez was released from state prison in January of 2013 after serving time for battering a corrections officer and was under parole supervision in Ford County.


Suspect's statements admissible in homicide case

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Prosecutors will be able to use incriminating statements made by a Lawrence man charged in a deadly apartment shooting. The Lawrence Journal World reports that Douglas County District Judge Paula Martin ruled Friday that the statements are admissible in court. Thirty-year-old Dustin D. Walker is charged with first-degree murder in the March killing of 39-year-old Patrick Roberts. The probable cause statement says the shooting happened while Walker was attempting to commit aggravated burglary. Walker is being held in Douglas County Jail on one million dollars bond. He will next appear in court on October 27th, when a date for his jury trial will be set.


KBI forensic center takes shape at Washburn

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Bureau of Investigation's new forensic center is taking shape on the Washburn University campus in Topeka. A "topping out" ceremony to place the final steel beam required for construction on part of the Forensic Science Center was held Wednesday. Exterior construction on the $55 million project is expected to be completed by December. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the science center is expected to open in October 2015. The KBI currently uses a lab in the basement of an 86-year-old former junior high school, which has insufficient heating and air conditioning and doesn't meet standards for a modern forensic laboratory. Washburn will lease the land and finance the construction with bonds, and then allow the KBI to repay the bonds through rent payments over 20 or 30 years.

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