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Headlines for Saturday, December 25, 2021


KC Sees Spike in COVID-19 Cases

LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) - The Kansas City area is in the midst of a COVID-19 surge, with 1,600 new cases reported in a single day this week.  The Kansas City Star reports it marks one of the biggest single-day increases since the coronavirus pandemic began.  The figure includes data from Johnson and Wyandotte counties in Kansas; Jackson, Clay, and Platte counties in Missouri.


Wastewater Data Shows Omicron Spreading Rapidly in Missouri

LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) - The highly contagious omicron variant is spreading rapidly across Missouri.  New wastewater testing data released Friday shows the omicron variant has been detected in almost 25% of the locations tested, including Kansas City and St. Joseph.  Samples collected just one week earlier in only 3 percent of testing locations.  A spokesman for the Missouri Department of Health and Human Services says the latest data is based on samples collected the week of December 13th.


Man Fatally Shot at Southern Kansas Lake

ARKANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Authorities in southern Kansas are investigating after a man was shot to death at a fishing lake. The Cowley County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call just after 6 p.m. Wednesday reporting a shooting at Cowley State Fishing Lake. After a search of nearly two hours, deputies found 37-year-old Joel Leon-Santos of Arkansas City, who had been shot. The coroner pronounced him dead at the scene. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is urging anyone with information on the shooting to come forward. No further details were released.


Prosecutor: Topeka Police Justified in Fatal Shooting

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Topeka area prosecutor has found that police were justified in fatally shooting a homicide suspect. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that Shawnee County District Attorney Mike Kagay said this week that no charges would be filed in the death of 33-year-old Jesse Buck Lees. Kagay also found that Lees acted alone in the fatal shooting of his girlfriend, 25-year-old Jennifer Morris. Witnesses said Morris and Lees had gotten into an argument on Sept. 8 before he dragged her into a bathroom and shot her. Police spotted Lees on September 10th pulling out of a convenience store parking lot and a chase ensued. After crashing, Lees took off running and raised a handgun in the direction of police. Three officers then fired.


Double Homicide Suspect Believed to Have Committed Suicide

LONGTON, Kan. (AP) — Authorities say a man fatally shot two people in rural Kansas and then apparently killed himself in a nearby home. The Kansas Bureau of Investigation said in a news release that 41-year-old Lyle Miller showed up at an outdoor gathering early Thursday in the small southern Kansas town of Longton and opened fire, killing 55-year-old Dewayne Smith and an unidentified 57-year-old. The KBI said that Miller then fled to a nearby home. Law enforcement surrounded the house, spending hours trying to convince him to leave before sending a robot inside. The robot then located Miller dead from what appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

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