Magnitude-3.9 Earthquake Rattles Northern Oklahoma, Southern Kansas
MEDFORD, Okla. (AP) — An earthquake has rattled parts of northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas. The U.S. Geological Survey reports the magnitude 3.9 quake struck about 9 miles southeast of Medford, Oklahoma, last (THUR) night. No injuries or damage was reported. Medford is near the Kansas state line about 70 miles south of Wichita. A smaller 2.5-magnitude earthquake was recorded around 5 p.m. Thursday roughly 10 miles west of Harper, Kansas. Thousands of earthquakes have been recorded in Oklahoma in recent years. Many of them have been linked to the underground injection of wastewater from oil and natural gas production operations. State regulators have directed oil and gas producers to close some wells and reduce injection volumes in others.
Manhunt for KC Homicide Suspect Causes Lockdowns of 2 Towns
BELLEVILLE, Kan. (AP) - Authorities say the search for a suspect in a Kansas City-area homicide caused several schools and public agencies to be placed on lockdown in two small north-central Kansas towns about 180 miles away. The Kansas City Star reports that the lockdowns happened Thursday as authorities searched for 24-year-old Zachary Barnes in Belleville, which is near the Nebraska border, and Concordia. The Republic County Sheriff's Office says Barnes fled to Belleville when deputies went to a home in nearby Scandia to arrest him on a murder warrant. From Belleville, he is suspected of fleeing to Concordia, about 20 miles to the south. Barnes remains at large. Kansas Highway Patrol troopers aided the sheriff's department and police in the manhunt. Authorities say Barnes is considered possibly armed and dangerous.
Lyon County Investigating After Body Found in Burned Vehicle
EMPORIA, Kan. (AP) — Lyon County authorities are investigating the death of a person whose body was found inside a burning vehicle. Sheriff Jeff Cope says deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle in rural Lyon County about five miles east of Emporia. The vehicle had been burned at the location and deputies found the body inside. Cope says the death is being investigated as a possible homicide. No information on the person's identity has been released. The Lyon County Sheriff's Office said in a statement that deputies made the discovery Thursday morning while responding to a report of a suspicious vehicle. Several law enforcement agencies are involved in the investigation, including the Kansas State Fire Marshal's Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff's office.
Kansas Lawmaker: I'd Rather Give Money to North Korea than Public Radio
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A conservative Kansas legislator says he would give money to North Korea before he'd support Kansas Public Radio. The Lawrence Journal-World reported that Republican Representative J.R. Claeys, of Salina, expressed disdain for public radio Wednesday in a tweet responding to a fundraising tweet by KPR Statehouse reporter Stephen Koranda. Claeys tweeted that he'd sooner give to "DPRK News" because its propaganda is "under duress." DRPK is the acronym for the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, or North Korea. Asked about the tweet, Claeys questioned in a message why anyone would be surprised that a Republican would balk at funding what he called a "democrat radio station." As for North Korea, Claeys retweeted a message suggesting that the U.S. has no reason not to launch a nuclear strike on that nation.
Trump Picks Wichita Attorney for Federal Bench
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — President Donald Trump has nominated a Wichita attorney whose practice is oil and gas law to the federal bench in Kansas. If confirmed, John W. Broomes would replace retiring U.S. District Judge J. Thomas Marten in Wichita. Broomes is a former submarine officer and petroleum engineer who practices at the Hinkle Law Firm. His LinkedIn profile shows he previously worked as a law clerk to former U.S. District Judge Monti Belot. His resume includes a 3-year stint as a project manager for Koch Industries' pipeline and refinery operations. The Center for Responsive Politics shows Broomes contributed to Senator Ted Cruz during the 2016 Republican primary. He has also donated to several other GOP candidates. Senators Pat Roberts and Jerry Moran urged his confirmation, citing his "impressive record."
Democrat to Stay on Trump Voter Panel Despite Calls to Leave
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire's secretary of state says he won't step down from President Donald Trump's commission on election fraud despite calls from the state's congressional delegation to do so. All four members of the delegation say fellow Democrat Bill Gardner should step down because the panel's vice chairman is using irrelevant data to rehash false claims. Republican Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach on Thursday said data about how many people failed to get New Hampshire driver's licenses after using out-of-state licenses for voter registration is proof of fraud that likely led to Senator Maggie Hassan's victory over Republican incumbent Kelly Ayotte in November. Gardner told The Associated Press on Friday that he doesn't condone Kobach's claims but will remain on the commission because it's important to figure out why Americans are losing trust in the election process.
Report: Kansas Wheat Crop Had Lower Protein Levels
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A report shows Kansas farmers harvested a winter wheat crop this year that had lower than usual protein levels. The report issued Thursday by the National Agricultural Statistics Service and Kansas Grain Inspection Service showed protein content averaged 11.6 percent. That is down from 11.7 percent last year as well as the 10-year average of 12.5 percent. Wheat crops with protein levels of 12 percent or more fetch premium prices for farmers because that higher quality wheat is used to make bread. The protein in flour is what gives it strength when mixed with water and yeast, allowing the bread to rise better for fluffier loaves. The average test weight in Kansas was 60.5 pounds per bushel. About 67 percent of the crop was graded No. 1, the highest rating.
Konza Prairie Station Receives $225,000 Federal Grant
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — The National Science Foundation has awarded Konza Prairie Biological Station and the Division of Biology nearly $225,000 to upgrade facilities for long-term bison research. The money will be used to replace some Konza Prairie corrals, build more pens, provide researchers easier access and add more remote scales to document the body weight of about 280 bison. Konza Prairie director John Briggs says the bison experiment studies how bison grazing affects the tallgrass prairie and measures bison performance, such as seasonal weight gains, in response to grassland conditions. The research began in 1987. The facilities were last improved in 1997.
Kansas State Fair Getting Ready to Open in Hutchinson
HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas State Fair is getting ready to open in Hutchinson. The annual fair starts Friday and runs through September 17 on the Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson. Events include a grape stomp Saturday to help celebrate the grape and wine industry in Kansas. The Kansas Department of Agriculture says that there are 41 farm wineries through the state. The wine industry is credited with contributing nearly $47 million to the state's economy and employing more than 200 Kansans. The fair also will feature carnival rides, livestock competitions, milking demonstrations, pig races, an antique tractor pull and demolition derby. Visitors also can see performances by Los Lonely Boys, Loverboy & Survivor, Josh Turner, TobyMac, Smashmouth, Old Dominion and Chevelle.
After Boy Found in Concrete, Ex-Wichita Mayor Seeks Answers
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A former Wichita mayor and gubernatorial candidate says unsuccessful efforts were made to confirm the safety of his grandson before a body that is believed to be the boy's was found encased in concrete. The Wichita Eagle reports that Carl Brewer says "something went wrong," although it's too early to know whether the system failed 3-year-old Evan Brewer. Police say the body found Saturday in a rental home is likely that of Evan, though final confirmation is awaiting DNA results. Brewer says Evan's father, Carlo Brewer, worked through the court system, the state child protective agency and police, raising concerns about Evan. Evan's mother and her boyfriend have been arrested but not charged in the death. Brewer says Governor Sam Brownback told him he would look into welfare officials' involvement.
Air Service from Dodge City, Liberal to Denver Ends Monday
DODGE CITY, Kan. (AP) — The regional airline hub providing service between Dodge City, Liberal and Denver is grounding its operations two months earlier than expected. PenAir announced last month that it was filing for Chapter 11 reorganization and would close its Denver and Portland, Oregon, hubs. Dodge City thought it would have 90 days before the airline quit flying. But on Tuesday, the carrier said its last day would be Monday. CEO Danny Seybert said in a release that the closure was necessary because several pilots had resigned and the airline could not replace them. PenAir was the Essential Air Service provider for the Dodge City Regional Airport. The Dodge City Daily Globe reports city manager Cherise Tieben says the city is working with federal officials to find a new airline.
Topeka Police Investigate Intentional Hit-and-Run of Cyclist
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ Police say a bicycle rider was intentionally hit by a pickup truck in downtown Topeka by a driver who didn't stop. The bicycle rider told police he was riding on the sidewalk Thursday when the truck drove over a curb and hit him on purpose. Police say the victim knew the truck driver. The incident happened after an apparent disturbance at the Let's Help soup kitchen. Police said someone may have pulled a knife during the disturbance but no one was injured. Police Officer Brian Mooney said the bicycle rider was ``banged up'' but he refused medical treatment.
Chiefs Upset Super Bowl Champion Patriots, 42-27
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — The Kansas City Chiefs' Alex Smith threw two long touchdown passes and rookie Kareem Hunt scored three times to help Kansas City stun New England 42-27 on Thursday night in the season opener. After a sensational Super Bowl rally to collect a fifth Lombardi Trophy, the Patriots faded badly in the second half. A sold-out crowd of 65,878 celebrated the unveiling of yet another championship banner, and there was plenty of talk about Tom Brady leading them to a 19-0 record. It was the first time the Patriots lost at Gillette Stadium when leading at halftime, a span of 82 games. They were no match for the Chiefs in the last two periods. Tyreek Hill scored on a 75-yarder and Hunt put the Chiefs in front with a 78-yarder to punctuate Kansas City's charge after trailing 17-14 at halftime. Hunt also had a 58-yard run and finished with 141 yards rushing and 98 receiving. Hill had 133 yards through the air, and Smith went 28 for 35 for 368 yards and four touchdowns. Brady, the 13th quarterback to start an NFL game at age 40, didn't look too spry. He struggled in the second half and didn't throw for a touchdown, finishing 16 for 36 for 267 yards.
Twins Rally in Ninth Inning to Stun Royals, 4-2
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Twins' Jorge Polanco drove in the go-ahead runs off ailing Kansas City closer Kelvin Herrera with two outs in the ninth inning, and Minnesota rallied to beat the Royals 4-2 on Thursday night. Herrera, who has been dealing with a mild forearm strain, inherited a 2-1 lead before giving up a pair of singles and a walk. Brian Dozier hit a tying sacrifice fly, and after Joe Mauer was walked intentionally, Polanco lined a single up the middle for the lead. Trevor Hildenberger (3-2) earned the win with a scoreless eighth in relief of Twins starter Kyle Gibson, while Matt Belisle handled a perfect ninth to pick up his sixth save.