KC Protests Continue Amid COVID Jump
LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) Protests continue in Kansas City this weekend, even as the number of COVID-19 cases continue to rise. The Kansas City Star reports that the metro area marked 3 deaths and 141 new cases yesterday (SAT). The increase marks the fourth triple-digit increase of the week. The Kansas City area is approaching 5,000 cases of COVID-19. Last week the director of the Centers for Disease Control warned a congressional committee that protest could be "seeding events" for the pandemic and encouraged protestors to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms.
Topeka Churches to Hold "Lament" on Statehouse Grounds
LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) After several days of protests across the state, two Topeka churches are hosting a public prayer gathering today (SUN) on the grounds of the Kansas Statehouse. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that organizers of the events are calling it a "lament," not a protest. Reverend Jim Congdon says it will be a spiritual, not political, event. The public is invited to the gathering at 5:00 today, which is expected to last only between 10 and 15 minutes.
Topeka Target Facility Reports COVID-19 Cluster
TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) A Target distribution center in Topeka says multiple employees have tested positive for coronavirus. KSNT reports that a Target spokesperson says the affected workers are in quarantine, and the distribution center is being deep-cleaned and sanitized.
One Killed, 4 Injured in KC Jazz District Shooting
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Authorities say one person was killed and four were injured in a shooting in a historic jazz district in Kansas City. Police responded early Saturday morning to the shooting in the 18th and Vine district, near the American Jazz Museum, which draws thousands of visitors every year. Kansas City Police Department spokesman Sgt. Jacob Becchina said officers also went to a nearby hospital, where several shooting victims had arrived. Police didn’t immediately release the name of the man who was killed. The other four victims, three men and one woman, were in stable condition.
Kansas Congressman Watkins Faces Attacks Labeling him GOP Impostor
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A freshman Kansas congressman who’s toed the conservative line and steadfastly defended President Donald Trump nevertheless is battling accusations that he’s an imposter. Representative Steve Watkins is in a tough Republican primary race that is really about whether his campaign could self-destruct in the fall. Watkins’ voting record and statements decrying Trump’s impeachment leave so little room on the right that his primary challenger’s campaign is scrutinizing Watkins’ fundraising abilities and questioning his loyalties to the GOP. State Treasurer Jake LaTurner is trying to revive doubts that arose during Watkins’ first race two years ago when Watkins emerged from a crowded primary and narrowly won the general election.
Kansas Education Officials Prepping for School Reopening
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas education officials are preparing to reopen the state’s schools in the fall but acknowledged that the coronavirus pandemic will force widespread changes. Kansas Commissioner of Education Dr. Randy Watson said in a news release Friday that the department is “prepared to do everything within our power to keep staff, students and families safe." Watson assembled a task force in May to develop comprehensive guidance for safely reopening school buildings. One team is working working on guidance about sanitation, social distancing, busing and food served, while another is focused on instruction. The Kansas State Board of Education will consider the guidelines at its July meeting.