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Headlines for Monday, September 10, 2018

Board Keeps Kobach in Kansas Governor's Race

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An all-Republican state board has rejected a liberal activist's challenge to Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach appearing on the November ballot as the GOP nominee for governor. The State Objections Board concluded Monday that Davis Hammet of Topeka could not show that Kobach's narrow victory over Governor Jeff Colyer in the Republican primary in August would be overturned because of issues Hammet raised. Hammet argued hundreds of legal ballots were not counted. Kobach defeated Gov. Jeff Colyer by 343 votes out of more than 317,000 cast. The board was Kobach's top deputy and representatives of the lieutenant governor and attorney general. Hammet called it a "ridiculous board" needing reform. He did not rule out filing a lawsuit. Hammet leads the voting-rights group Loud Light and regularly criticizes Republicans.

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Kansas Board to Review Challenge to Kobach's Bid for Governor

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An all-Republican state board plans to review a liberal activist's challenge to Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach being listed as the GOP nominee for governor on the November ballot.  The State Objections Board was meeting Monday afternoon to consider an objection from Davis Hammet of Topeka. He contends that hundreds of legal ballots were not counted in the August primary.  The board is Kobach, Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Lt. Governor Tracey Mann or their representatives. State law requires it to review election objections.  Kobach defeated Governor Jeff Colyer by 343 votes out of more than 317,000 cast. Colyer supporters initially raised questions about whether legal votes weren't counted, but the governor conceded the race.  Hammet leads the voting-rights group Loud Light, which has criticized Republicans in the past.

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Immigration Tricky Issue in Tight Kansas Congressional Race

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder and his Democratic challenger are having a hard time keeping their political footing on immigration issues.  It's complicating their efforts to win a competitive swing district in Kansas that President Donald Trump narrowly lost.  Yoder is under pressure from the right despite an endorsement from Trump. Yoder backed away this week from a Democratic proposal that he initially supported to ensure immigrants fleeing domestic and gang violence can claim asylum.  Democratic challenger Sharice Davids continues to battle GOP ads that say she supports abolishing ICE. She said so during a liberal podcast n July but has disavowed that position, including in a recent television ad.  Yoder is seeking his fifth term. Davids is getting national attention because she's an LGBT Native American and mixed-martial arts fighter.

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Head of Homeland Security Touring Manhattan Lab

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — The head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is touring the National Agro-Defense Facility that is under construction in Manhattan. Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen is visiting the facility Monday with a host of federal and state leaders. They include U.S. Sens. Pat Roberts and Jerry Moran, U.S. Reps. Roger Marshall and Kevin Yoder, Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer and Kansas State President Richard Myers. The $1.25 billion research facility, or NBAF, will study diseases that can be spread from animals to humans. The facility is expected to open in 2022.

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Moran to Speak About Global Security on 9/11 Anniversary

 (AP) — U.S. Senator Jerry Moran is speaking at Kansas State University about global security on the 17th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Moran's appearance is part of the Landon Lecture series. The series is named for former Kansas Gov. Alf Landon, who was the 1936 Republican nominee for president. The series was established in 1966 to bring in speakers to discuss issues facing business, politics and international relations. Moran will talk about how the terrorist attack shaped his priorities. The lecture is free and open to the public.

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Man Sentenced to Nearly 25 Years for Kansas Contract Killing

SALINA, Kan. (AP) — A man has been ordered to spend nearly 25 years in prison for hiring someone to kill a Salina man. The Salina Journal-World reports that 41-year-old James Pavey was sentenced last week for intentional second-degree murder, solicitation to commit first-degree premeditated murder and conspiracy to commit aggravated kidnapping. He pleaded no contest to the charges in June. Prosecutors say Pavey entered an agreement with 31-year-old Charles Rodgers to kill 29-year-old Brandon Lee Shelby. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation said in an affidavit that Rodgers beat, choked and stabbed Shelby, expecting Pavey to pay him with money or drugs. Shelby's body was found in June 2017 on a path near a popular fishing area northeast of Salina. Rogers is awaiting sentencing. Two others who are accused of helping are awaiting trial.

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Kansas State Drum Major Proposes During Halftime

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — Kansas State University's football team may have lost the game Saturday, but fans at the stadium still erupted in cheers as one of the school's drum majors proposed to a graduate student during halftime. Carly Tracz tells the Wichita Eagle that she couldn't say "yes" fast enough after boyfriend and Kansas State Marching Band drum major Blake Moris got down on one knee while fans watched on the big screens at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Moris says Tracz "loves halftime proposals." He knew he wanted to propose in front of the university's band of more than 400 people. The couple began dating just days after meeting during a 2016 football game, with band and football an integral part of their relationship. Moris says the proposal "worked so perfectly."

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Police: Driver Strikes, Kills Pedestrian with Car in Wichita

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Authorities say a driver may have been drinking before he struck and killed a pedestrian with a car in Wichita. Police Officer Charley Davidson says 42-year-old Jason Murphy was hit around 9 p.m. Sunday as he was walking in a street. The Wichita Eagle reports that. Murphy was pronounced dead at the scene. Davidson says the 21-year-old man who struck Murphy may have been under the influence of alcohol. Authorities are investigating.

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Police Find Man Shot to Death Near Downtown Kansas City

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Police in Kansas City say a 23-year-old man has been shot to death near the city's downtown area.  Police say Gary Starr's body was found just before 1 am Saturday at 18th Street and Highland Avenue, just south of the Kansas City Urban Youth Academy, after an off-duty officer heard shots.  No arrests had been reported by midday Saturday, and police were asking the public for tips on the city's latest homicide.

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Trial Ordered for 2 in Deaths of Pair from Colorado, Kansas

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A judge has ordered two men to stand trial in the shooting deaths of a man and woman in Colorado Springs.  The Gazette reported Saturday that 20-year-old Nashid Rayon Rivers and 19-year-old Marquis Dantre Hazard are charged with murder in the deaths of Serena Lee Garcia and Marcus Howard Denton.  Garcia was 21 and lived in Parker. Denton was 20 and was a native of Atchison, Kansas. Their bodies were found in a car on April 21.  Investigators testified that Rivers' brother told police the defendants planned to steal marijuana from the victims.  In a hearing Friday, District Judge Larry Edward Schwartz noted Rivers and Hazard each blamed the other for the shootings. Schwartz said the evidence was sufficient for both to be tried.  Another hearing is scheduled for November 13.

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Kansas Elementary Teacher Indicted on Child Sex Charge

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — An elementary school teacher in Kansas City, Kansas, has been charged with sexual solicitation of a minor.  The Kansas City Star reports 42-year-old Jason Crum, of Shawnee, has been charged on a felony count of sexual exploitation of a child. He was released from jail after posting $100,000 bond.  The charge alleges that between January 2014 and January 2015, Crum attempted to convince a child under the age of 18 to engage in sexually explicit conduct.  Crum is listed on the Kansas City, Kansas, school district's website as an elementary school teacher.  A district spokeswoman says officials had recently been made aware of Crum's arrest and placed him on administrative leave.  Court records do not list an attorney for Crum.

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Man Who Groped Uber Driver Sentenced to Probation

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A man accused of repeatedly grabbing his Uber driver's genitals during a drive through Lawrence was sentenced to two years of probation but must register as a sex offender for 25 years. The Lawrence Journal-World reports 23-year-old Landon Roberson, of Lawrence, was sentenced Friday after pleading no contest in July to attempted aggravated sexual battery. He would serve a year in prison if he violates probation. Prosecutors say the Uber driver, a 30-year-old man, told police the man grabbed the driver's crotch or tried to grab his genitals about a dozen times. The driver told police each time he told the man to stop, the passenger became agitated and angry, which made the driver fear for his life.

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St. Joseph Worker Awarded $8.5 Million in Discrimination Suit

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Joseph woman has been awarded $8.5 million in a racial discrimination lawsuit she brought against Missouri gas utility Spire.  The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a St. Louis jury has awarded $1.3 million in actual damages and $7.2 million in punitive damages to 47-year-old Danielle McGaughy, who had worked for the utility since 2004.  McGaughy, who is black, sued in 2016, accusing the company of passing her over for promotion for a younger white co-worker who had less education and work experience. McGaughy's lawsuit also said she endured a hostile work environment, where co-workers referred to then-President Barack Obama as a monkey.  Spire said in a written statement that it employs a diverse workforce and celebrates differences. The company says it will appeal.

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Kansas Woman Sentenced for Social Security Fraud

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — A 50-year-old Wellington woman has been sentenced six months in prison and ordered to pay more than $86,000 in restitution for fraudulently collecting Social Security benefits.  U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said Amy McLain was sentenced Friday for one count of Social Security fraud. She pleaded guilty to receiving Social Security benefits while working from 2008 to 2014 at Kreifels Communications. She fraudulently reported to Social Security that she was not working and had no income.  A co-defendant, 58-year-old Scott Kreifels, of Wellington, was sentenced to two years of probation and ordered to pay more than $49,900 in restitution. McLain's husband, 49-year-old Jeffrey McLain, also of Wellington, will be sentenced November 1.

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Topeka Woman Who Was Shot Was Pregnant; Unborn Child  Dies

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Topeka police say a woman who was shot outside her southwest Topeka home Saturday was pregnant and the unborn child has died. WIBW reports the woman, 28-year-old Keishona Wilkins, was in critical but stable condition Monday. Investigators say Wilkins was shot several times when she walked out of her house around 10:30 p.m. Thursday. Police spokeswoman Gretchen Koenen says police are investigating the baby's death as a homicide. The shooting is still under investigation.

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Vehicle Pulling Out of Driveway Hit, Kills Kansas Child

OLATHE, Kan. (AP) — Olathe police say an 18-month-old boy died after being hit by a vehicle. Police said the child was hit shortly after noon in Olathe. Investigators believe a family member may have been backing out of the driveway when the incident happened. The child was later pronounced dead at a hospital. The investigation is continuing.

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Fastest 9-Year-Old in the the Nation Lives in Wichita

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A Wichita girl has become the fastest 9-year-old in the country.  The Wichita Eagle reports that Juliah Bolden won the 100- and 200-meter national championships in the 9-year-old division last month at the AAU Junior Olympic Games. Juliah broke the national record in both races the year before in the 8-and-under division.  Juliah's father Jimmy Bolden says his daughter is building herself a little dynasty right now. Bolden says when Juliah steps on the track, everyone knows who she is.  Juliah comes from a family of athletes. Her father led Wichita State basketball during the 1992-93 season. Her sister, Jewell, won seven Kansas high school state championships in track and field. And her mother, Shirley Bolden, was a three-time All-Big Ten sprinter at Michigan State.  Jimmy Bolden says Juliah is following in the right footsteps.

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Kansas State Researchers to Study Declining Grassland Birds

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — Two Kansas State University researchers have been awarded more than $540,000 to study why several grassland bird species are in steep decline.  The university says in a news release that assistant biology professor Alice Boyle and assistant statistics professor Trevor Hefley will spend three years identify the key reasons behind the population changes. Funding for their work comes from the National Science Foundation.  They'll study dickcissels, eastern meadowlarks and grasshopper sparrows using data that's been gathered at the Konza Prairie Biological Station. The 8,600-acre native tallgrass research area is jointly owned by the university and the Nature Conservancy.  The study will look at factors that include rainfall variability, grazing and grassland burning.

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Construction Begins on Emporia State's President's Home

EMPORIA, Kan. (AP) — After a four-year fundraising campaign ended in late July, crews recently broke ground for construction of a new home for the university's president and a public entertaining space.  The Emporia Gazette reports the 5,708-square-foot structure will include both private living space for the president and a separate public space. The house will be built on the grounds of the former president's residence.  More than $1.8 million in private funds were raised for the project, including $300,000 in an endowment fund for ongoing upkeep.  Lead donors for the project included the Breidenthal Foundation of Kansas City, Carolyn Langenwalter of Wichita and Steve and Bobbi Sauder of Emporia.  Presidents of regents universities in Kansas are required to live on campus.  Construction is expected to be completed by October 2019.

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Kansas State Fair Offers Unusual Deep Fried Food, New Shows

HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas State Fair is welcoming some unusual food vendors and new attractions this year, from deep fried Pina Coladas to an inaugural Bread Sculpture contest.  The Wichita Eagle reports the fair in Hutchinson opened Friday, featuring a food lineup that attempts to outdo outrageous concoctions from the past. This year's food vendors are serving deep fried deviled eggs, pickles stuffed with sour hard candy and burgers topped with a MoonPie.  The Hutchinson News reports that the "Timberworks Lumberjack Show" will be a main attraction this year. The show coming from Wisconsin features lumberjacks competing in events such as log rolling, speed climbing and ax throwing.  Kansas Wheat is also hosting a new contest this year for competitors to "look beyond the loaf." The competition is to sculpt bread dough into creative pieces.

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Baby Orangutan Gets Lots of Snuggles from Wichita Zookeepers

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A baby Sumatran orangutan has been getting lots of snuggles from zookeepers in Wichita. The Sedgwick County Zoo says on its Facebook page that the primate was delivered Friday via C-section after her mother, Daisy, encountered complications. The post says zookeepers provided "round-the-clock" feedings while Daisy recovered. The zoo posted video showing the newborn clinging to a zookeeper wearing a handmade shirt with fleece fringe that is designed to simulate Daisy's long fur. The baby is the third for Daisy, who is 36, and the third for her father, Panji, who is 22. In the wild, Sumatran orangutans are critically endangered because of deforestation for palm oil plantations.

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Kansas Snaps 46-Game Road Skid with 31-7 Win at C. Michigan

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (AP) — Pooka Williams rushed for 125 yards and two touchdowns as Kansas snapped the second-longest road losing streak in college football history at 46 games, winning 31-7 at Central Michigan on Saturday.  Central Michigan quarterback Tony Poljan was intercepted four times by Kansas (1-1), which won on the road for the first time since Sept. 12, 2009. The Kansas streak was only topped by Idaho State, which lost 48 straight through 2014.  Central Michigan had one first down in the first half, compiling 60 yards on 20 snaps. The Chippewas (0-2) did not cross midfield until there was 7:54 remaining in the third quarter.  Kansas quarterback Peyton Bender was 17-of-26 passing for 130 yards, connecting with wide receiver Kerr Johnson Jr. for a 31-yard touchdown to open the scoring.  After two Williams scores, Central Michigan cut the lead to 21-7 on a 31-yard reception by Jamil Sabbagh from Poljan in the third quarter.  But on the first play of the fourth quarter, Shakial Taylor of Kansas went up for an interception and returned it 55 yards for a touchdown and a 28-7 lead.

THE TAKEAWAY

Kansas: With the historic losing streak behind the Jayhawks in their best chance to snap it this season, David Beaty's team can go one week without its coach on the hot seat. Athletic director Jeff Long released a statement after last week's season-opening 26-23 overtime loss to Nicholls, saying the evaluation of the program was "ongoing."  Central Michigan: The Chippewas are 0-2 against Power 5 basketball powerhouse schools after losing 35-20 last week at Kentucky. At least the offense moved the chains a few times late for Central Michigan, which was scoreless in the second half last week and in the first half on Saturday.

UP NEXT
Kansas: Hosts Rutgers on September 15 looking for Beaty's second Power 5 win in his fourth season with the Jayhawks. 

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