Two Dead After Wrong-Way Collision on KC Interstate
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City police say two people were killed and another was injured in a wrong-way collision on an interstate in Kansas City. Police say the accident happened early Saturday when a car was driving south in the northbound lanes of Interstate 49. The car collided head-on with a Jeep. The driver and a passenger in the Jeep died. The driver of the car is hospitalized in critical condition. The two people in the Jeep were a 31-year-old man and a 29-year-old woman, both from Kansas City. An investigation into the accident is continuing.
Missouri Man Charged in Paola Man's Death
BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri man is charged with second-degree murder in the death of a Kansas man outside a restaurant. Jackson County prosecutors charged 24-year-old John Dewayne Jeffries of Raytown on Thursday in the death of Clinton Peckman, of Paola, Kansas, who had gone to the area to work. Investigators say Peckman was shot while he was inside a work van parked near the Bethlehem Cafe in Blue Springs. Jeffries also is charged with first-degree robbery and two counts of armed criminal action. He allegedly tried to carjack a vehicle from another couple before he was found and arrested.
Wichita Venue Triples Profits
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Big-name acts like Paul McCartney and Neil Diamond helped the Intrust Bank Arena in Wichita more than triple its profits this year. The Wichita Eagle reports the high-priced acts also led to a 43 percent increase in the average ticket price at the arena. Arena management reported total net income was just below $700,000 through the third quarter of this year, compared with $213,000 at the same time last year. The average ticket price rose from $30.31 to $43.40 this year. Arena general manager A.J. Boleski said the arena had fewer shows but the performances were more profitable. Concerts account for $1.9 million of the arena's $2.9 million in event income in the first three quarters. SMG, the arena management company, shares profit with Sedgwick County, which owns the arena.
Lawrence Gets Approval to Release Contaminated Water into Kaw River
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — The city of Lawrence will be allowed to release millions of gallons of nitrogen-contaminated water into the Kansas River. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment authorized the city to release the water from the former Farmland fertilizer plant during the next several months, under certain conditions. Agency officials say they don't expect the water to have any impact because the nitrogen will be heavily diluted. The Lawrence Journal-World reports the city is authorized to release up to 30 million gallons of nitrogen-contaminated water from now until April 1st. It can't release more than 500,000 gallons per day, and the discharge is allowed only when the river flow is more than 1,000 cubic feet per second. The discharge is necessary because storage tanks at the plant site are at capacity.
Kansas Senate Leader: Court Decision Timed for Political Gain
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The leader of the Kansas Senate says the state Supreme Court timed a recent decision on school finance to help Democrats elect a governor. Republican Susan Wagle on Friday denounced the court's October ruling that found the state's school funding formula is unconstitutional. Wagle says the justices want to elect a Democratic governor in order to have more Democrats appointed to the court. The Wichita Eagle reports Wagle also says Kansas is headed toward a constitutional crisis over education funding. She suggested considering an amendment to the Kansas Constitution to remove a requirement that the Legislature provide "suitable" provision for school funding. A court spokeswoman told the Eagle justices don't comment on pending cases.
Homeland Security to Conduct Bio-Terrorism Test Near Kansas Border
ARKANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — The Department of Homeland Security is planning to conduct chemical and biological tests near the border between Kansas and Oklahoma. The Wichita Eagle reports that department officials plan to execute a "low level outdoor release" of inert chemical and biological simulant materials at the old Chilocco Indian School in January and again in June. The campus is in Oklahoma, approximately six miles south of Arkansas City. The department said part of the test is to determine how much protection people would get from staying inside a house or an apartment if biological agents are used in a terror attack. For the particle test, the government plans to release titanium dioxide, described as a "white odorless powder that is chemically insoluble in water, nonreactive, nonflammable and nonhazardous." For the biological test, the government plans to release genetic barcoded spores of an insecticide sold under the trade name of Dipel. Dipel is not considered hazardous by the Environmental Protection Agency when handled appropriately, according to the assessment. U.S. Representative Ron Estes of Kansas said "we need to be 100 percent certain this test is safe for the residents of south-central Kansas."