Kansas Scrutinizes Doctor over 13-Year-Old Girl's Abortion
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas's regulatory medical board is weighing disciplinary action against a doctor who may have violated state law in handling a 13-year-old girl's abortion. The Kansas State Board of Healing Arts is discussing a petition alleging Dr. Allen Palmer illegally failed to preserve fetal tissue from the 2014 abortion and submit it to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. The petition by the board's deputy litigation counsel says Palmer was a part-time Planned Parenthood contractor solely tasked with performing abortions for patients in their first trimester. The petition says Palmer's attorney has insisted his client inadvertently violated the state law and regulations because he wasn't aware of them.
Storm Hits Trego County Blowing Down Power Lines
WAKEENEY, Kan. (AP) - Authorities in Trego County, in western Kansas, are tallying the damage after a storm carrying softball-sized hail damaged homes and businesses throughout the county. Emergency Management Director Kathleen Fabrizius says strong winds slammed the county yesterday (THUR) afternoon, overturning vehicles, downing power lines and causing accidents. She says windows at the courthouse, a nursing home and the WaKeeney Family Care Center were blown out. The hospital was closed and patients were routed to the emergency room during the storm. Power was out for several hours in WaKeeney and parts of the county. Thick fog also developed in the area, causing numerous crashes. Most of the damage was in the county seat, WaKeeney, about 35 miles west of Hays.
3 Killed in Wyandotte County Wreck
EDWARDSVILLE, Kan. (AP) - The Kansas Highway Patrol says three people died and two children were hurt in a collision near Kansas City. The accident happened last (THUR) night on Kansas 32 in Edwardsville, about 15 miles east of Kansas City, Kansas. Investigators say a car driven by 42-year-old Aaron Ashlock of Kansas City, Kansas, was traveling west when it crossed the median and hit a car driven by 29-year-old Sarah Galutia of Overland Park. Ashlock and Galutia died in the crash, along with 33-year-old Ashley Gonzalez of Shawnee, who was a passenger in Galutia's car. Gonzalez's 11- and 12-year-old daughters were injured.
Kansas County Hard Hit by Fires Gets Fencing Funds
ASHLAND, Kan. (AP) — About five months after wildfires swept through Kansas, ranchers in the hardest-hit county have received the second installment of federal funds needed to replace fences. Clark County ranchers will get about $18 million in federal funds for miles of fencing lost when fires burned about 425,000 acres in March. The county received half of the $18 million shortly after the fire but the rest was delayed by budget shortfalls. Carla Wikoff, with the Kansas Farm Service Agency, says the rest of the funds for Clark County came in last week. A mile of fence, with labor, costs about $10,000 to replace. The Hutchinson News reports about 711,000 acres burned in Kansas in early March, with most of the losses coming in what was called the Starbuck fire in southwestern Kansas.
Appeals Court Upholds Nebraska Funeral Picketing Law
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A federal appeals court has agreed with a lower court's ruling upholding Nebraska's law requiring picketers to stay at least 500 feet from funerals. The U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday said that all speakers, including members of Westboro Baptist Church, have a constitutionally-protected right to express their beliefs at funerals. But the appeals court also said that those rights "are not absolute and some time, place, and/or manner restrictions are allowed." Shirley Phelps-Roper, a prominent member of the Topeka-Kansas based church, sued in 2009, arguing, among other things, that the Nebraska law is selectively enforced. The church protests at funerals throughout the country using anti-gay chants and signs because it believes God is punishing U.S. military members and others for defending a nation that tolerates homosexuality.
Man, 19, Charged with Murder in Kansas Double Slaying
NEWTON, Kan. (AP) — A 19-year-old man is jailed on $2.5 million bond after being accused of slaying his girlfriend and her 4-year-old daughter. Harvey County District Attorney David Yoder says Keith Hawkins is charged with capital and first-degree murder. Authorities say 24-year-old Alyssa Runyon and daughter Zaylynn Paz were found dead shortly after 11 a.m. Tuesday by Runyon's ex-boyfriend in bedrooms in the victims' duplex. Police said the girl had been fatally stabbed and that her mother strangled. Police said Hawkins was arrested later Tuesday in Taylor, Texas, where he allegedly was found driving Runyon's vehicle. Hawkins was returned to Kansas on Friday. Yoder says a possible motive in the killings has been determined, though he declined to discuss it publicly. It's not immediately clear if Hawkins has an attorney.
Fatal 2015 Helicopter Crash in Colorado Caused by Rotor Failure
ERIE, Colo. (AP) — A 2015 helicopter crash that killed two people in northern Colorado was caused by cracking in the helicopter's rotor system. That's according to a report released by the National Transportation Safety Board. The federal investigators say that the crash near the Erie airport was caused by an in-flight break-up of the aircraft's rotor system prompted by undetected fatigue cracking. The crash killed flight instructor Alex Viola, a 23-year-old from Arkansas City, Kansas. The crash also killed his student, 25-year-old Amy Wood of Boulder. The Denver Post first reported the NTSB's conclusion. The NTSB also cited the Enstrom 280FX's design as a contributing factor to the helicopter's crash. The aircraft was manufactured in 1985.
Loved Ones Remember Wichita Marine Killed in Plane Crash
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — The U.S. Marine Corps has confirmed that a Wichita man was one of three Marines lost when their aircraft crashed off the coast of Australia. The Wichita Eagle reports that 21-year-old Cpl. Nathan Ordway was the crew chief of the MV-22 Osprey that crashed while trying to land during a training exercise on August 5. Ordway and two other Marines have been declared dead. A recovery mission is underway. More than 20 other passengers on the aircraft were rescued after the crash. Ordway's mother said Thursday that if there's one thing she knows for sure, it's that her son died helping others. She says her son loved being a Marine, but always looked forward to calling home and spending time with family.
Shoe Chain Payless Emerges from Bankruptcy Protection
NEW YORK (AP) — Payless ShoeSource says it emerged from bankruptcy protection this week and is looking for a new CEO to lead the company. The low-priced shoe chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April. Several retailers have filed for bankruptcy protection in the past year, including American Apparel and RadioShack, hurt by the growth of online shopping. Others, including big department store chains, have been closing stores. Payless also has shut down hundreds of stores, but kept about 3,500 of them open. The Topeka, Kansas-based company says that CEO Paul Jones retired this week and that its board of directors will select a new leader. In the interim, Payless will be led by an executive committee.
Royals to Visit Omaha Storm Chasers for Exhibition in March
PAPILLION, Neb. (AP) — The Kansas City Royals will play the Omaha Storm Chasers in an exhibition next March to kick off the 50th year of the Royals having their top farm club in the Omaha area. The Storm Chasers announced on Thursday that the game is March 26 at Werner Park. It will be the first time the Royals have visited their Triple-A affiliate since 2000. The Storm Chasers franchise has been Kansas City's top farm club since 1969. No other major-league team has had its Triple-A affiliate in the same location as long. Tickets for the exhibition go on sale September 1.
Cardinals Beat Royals, 8-to-6, Win 4-Game Series
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The Cardinals' Dexter Fowler hit a grand slam and drove in a career-high five runs to lead St. Louis to an 8-6 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Thursday night. St. Louis tied a season-high with its sixth straight win. Kansas City has lost four in a row and six of its last seven games. St. Louis climbed within one game of the first-place Chicago Cubs in the NL Central. Lorenzo Cain had four hits for the Royals, who lost all four games in the four-game, inter-league, "I-70" series.