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Headlines for Tuesday, August 7, 2021


One Dead, Five Injured in Wichita Night Club Shooting

WICHITA, Kan. (KMUW) - Wichita Police are looking for a suspect in a shooting that killed one person and injured 5 others in Old Town, the city's bar and restaurant district.  Police say the shooting took place just after midnight this (TUE) morning at the Enigma Club and Lounge.  Authorities say a man was kicked out of the club after a disturbance. He returned later with a handgun and began firing outside through windows into the club.  A 34-year-old man was killed and five women were injured. Police say none of the injuries are life-threatening.  Police have identified the man killed as 34-year-old Preston Spencer, of Wichita.

(AP version)

Police: 1 Killed, Multiple Others Injured in Wichita Club Shooting

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Police say one person was killed and several others injured in a shooting at a downtown nightclub in Wichita.  Police say the shooting happened just after 12:30 am today (TUE) at the Enigma Club & Lounge. Arriving officers found one man fatally shot.  Police have identified the man killed as 34-year-old Preston Spencer, of Wichita. Police believe a man who had been kicked out of the club returned with a gun and opened fire from the sidewalk through the club's windows. Police are searching for the shooting suspect who fled after the attack.


Police: 4 Wounded in Shooting at SantaCaliGon Festival in Independence, Missouri

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. (AP) — Police in Missouri say four people have been wounded in a shooting at a festival. Independence police responded to the shooting at the SantaCaliGon Festival Sunday night. The department used Facebook to urge parents to pick up their children in the carnival area after gunfire erupted. Television station KCTV reports all four people are expected to survive their injuries. No arrests have been announced. It is not immediately clear what led up to the shooting.


Police ID Victim, Make Arrest in Kansas City, Kansas, Death

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Police in Kansas City, Kansas, have made an arrest in the weekend shooting death of a man. Police say the shooting happened Saturday night, when officers called to the scene found 27-year-old Travis Eugene Bowman, of Kansas City, Kansas, with gunshot wounds. Bowman was taken to a hospital, where he died. Police soon arrested 34-year-old Darnell Walker on suspicion of first-degree murder in Bowman's killing. The Kansas City Star reports that Walker is being held in Wyandotte County Jail on $250,000 bond.


Kansas City Police: Wrong-Way Crash on I-29 Killed 2

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Police in Kansas City say two people have died in a crash on Interstate 29 caused by a wrong-way driver. Police say the crash happened just after 5:30 am Monday when a car driven by a 23-year-old woman was traveling northbound in the southbound lanes of the interstate. Investigators say the car then collided head-on with another car driven by a 60-year-old man. Police say the woman died at the scene of the crash. The man was taken to a hospital, where he died a short time later. Police have not released their names.


Spending Federal COVID Aid Proves Tricky in Kansas

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Spending the latest round of federal COVID-19 aid is moving slowly in Kansas, and one town said it doesn’t want its share because it doesn't need it. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that while most state and local governments across the country saw the influx of money as an opportunity to shore up infrastructure, fight the COVID-19 pandemic and help local businesses, the 2,300-person town of Lakin turned down the $300,000 it was due to receive. City administrator Michael Heinitz said the local economy is humming and the town has ample reserves on hand to handle any new projects which might arise.


Stormont Vail Turns Away 20 COVID Patients Amid Vaccine Protests

LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) — Twenty coronavirus patients were turned away from Stormont Vail hospital in Topeka last week.  The hospital's website reports that six COVID-19 patients were admitted last Thursday, but staffing shortages required the hospital to turn away 20 patient requests from other hospitals. Meanwhile, the Topeka Capital-Journal reports that several dozen people gathered near Stormont Vail Saturday to protest the hospital's new COVID-19 vaccine mandate.  The hospital has announced that all staff will be required to receive the vaccine by October 31st.  The Capital-Journal reports that many of the protestors were from out of town.  LMH Health, also known as Lawrence Memorial Hospital, has mandated that all its employees and vendors be fully vaccinated by November 21.


More Kansas and Missouri Hospitals Requiring Staff Vaccinations

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (KNS) — Hospitals in several Kansas communities and in the Kansas City area are requiring their employees to get shots against COVID-19.  LMH Health in Lawrence and Stormont Vail, Topeka’s largest hospital, have joined several other health systems in setting deadlines for employees to get COVID vaccines. The Ascension health system, which owns facilities in Wichita, Pittsburg and Manhattan announced last month that it will require all staff members to be vaccinated. In the Kansas City area, the University of Kansas, Truman Medical Centers, and St. Luke’s health systems have taken the same steps. COVID hospitalizations have climbed back up to where they were in January. Kansas hospitals are caring for about 800 coronavirus inpatients.


Kansas Prisons Tamp Down COVID Spread

TOPEKA, Kan. (KNS) — Correctional facilities were sites of multiple COVID-19 clusters early in the pandemic, but the state's prisons have not seen a spike in cases as the delta variant surges. Kansas correctional facilities had only 63 COVID-19 cases from March through August among a population of more than 8,500 inmates. Low case counts are due in part to inmates having at least a 75% vaccination rate. Statewide, just over half of Kansans have at least one dose. Cases in some correctional facilities did increase in August, but most of those new cases were among staff members.


Senator Roger Marshall Endorses A-G Derek Schmidt in Kansas Governor's Race

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas Republican Senator Roger Marshall is endorsing Attorney General Derek Schmidt in the Kansas governor's race. Marshall had initially endorsed former Governor Jeff Colyer, who dropped out of the race last week after announcing he has prostate cancer. Marshall says Colyer's decision to leave the race will avoid a contentious GOP primary. With Marshall's announcement, Schmidt now is endorsed by nearly every major Republican political leader in the race against incumbent Democratic Governor Laura Kelly. The only exception is Kansas Republican Senator Jerry Moran, who has a policy of not endorsing candidates in primary elections.


White House Urged to Shutter Leavenworth Prison

BELLE PLAINE, Kan. (AP) — Civil rights advocates and federal public defenders are urging the White House to intervene to ensure that a privately run federal prison in Leavenworth shuts down when its contract expires at the end of this year. The letter to a White House office and local Leavenworth officials contends that the Leavenworth Detention Center is dangerously understaffed, unsafe and poorly managed. It details stabbings, suicides and a homicide that have happened there this year. The prison's operator, CoreCivic, says its critics' claims are “false and defamatory." The letter was signed by officials from the American Civil Liberties Union's affiliates in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska, and by the heads of several federal public defender offices.


Exhibit on KC LGBTQ History Reopened After Removal from Missouri Capitol

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) —  An exhibit on the history of the LGBTQ community in Kansas City has reopened in a state building in Jefferson City after being removed from the Missouri Capitol last week. The Missouri Department of Natural Resources said the exhibit opened over the weekend in the Lohman Building near the Capitol.  The display was removed from the Missouri State Museum after Republican lawmakers complained.  State Senator Greg Razer, a Democrat from Kansas City, criticized the decision to take down the exhibit.  DNR Director Dru Buntin apologized for how the incident unfolded and that it is important to tell the history of all Missourians.


Cattle Producers Have a Beef with 35-Year Marketing Campaign

BELLE PLAINE, Kan. (AP) — It’s one of the nation’s most iconic marketing slogans, but today the checkoff program that created the “Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner” campaign is under attack by the cattle producers who pay for it. The beef checkoff program forces ranchers to pay $1 per head of cattle sold — purportedly to get consumers to eat more beef.  But opponents are urging cattle producers to sign a petition calling for a referendum vote on terminating the program. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack last month granted an extension until October 3rd for them to collect the required signatures due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Four Injured After Driver Flees from Arkansas City Police

ARKANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Arkansas City police say four people were injured when a driver attempted to flee from a traffic stop. Police say an officer tried to stop a truck driven by 27-year-old Casiopia Price, of Arkansas City, Tuesday morning because she was believed to be driving with a suspended license. Police say Price drove away and collided with a van. The 46-year-old driver of the van and a 3-year-old passenger were hospitalized in stable condition. A 37-year-old passenger in the van was in critical condition. Police say Price was taken to an Arkansas City hospital, where she is listed in fair to critical condition.


Missouri Teen Died Following Water Scooter Accident at Table Rock Lake

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Authorities say a 14-year-old St. Louis teen died following a water scooter accident on Table Rock Lake in Missouri. The Missouri State Highway Patrol says the accident happened Saturday afternoon. The girl was pronounced dead at a hospital later that evening. Her name was not immediately released. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports she was driving a Bombardier water scooter on the lake when another water scooter driven by a 15-year-old boy hit hers. Both of the St. Louis-area teens were wearing safety devices at the time.


Police Identify Two Killed in Murder-Suicide Near Topeka

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _  The Shawnee County Sheriff's Office has identified a man and a woman found dead last week in an apparent murder-suicide. The Sheriff's Office says the bodies of 21-year-old Connor O'Hara and 20-year-old Hannah King, both of Topeka, were found Friday afternoon in a home just south of Topeka. The Capital-Journal reports that investigators believe an altercation occurred inside the home and that O'Hara fatally shot King before turning the gun on himself. Sheriff Brian Hill said investigators do not believe anyone else was involved in the fatal shooting, although detectives continue to investigate. 


Dodge City Man No Longer Facing Wichita Murder Charge 

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Police say a 28-year-old Dodge City man who was facing a possible first-degree murder charge in a shooting death near a Wichita park is no longer facing those charges and they are searching for another suspect. Police say Caesar Hermosillo of Dodge City was arrested on suspicion of first-degree murder and aggravated robbery in the death of 32-year-old Jason Huber of Wichita. But police said later Hermosillo no longer faces those charges. He remains in custody on a pending warrant. Police are now searching for another man in connection to Huber's death. Huber was found Wednesday suffering from gunshot wounds near South Riverside Park and he died later at a hospital.


Firefighters Extinguish Blaze at Topeka Multi-Family Dwelling

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Firefighters quickly extinguished a blaze at a multi-family dwelling in Topeka Saturday night. Topeka fire officials say crews responded shortly before 8:30 pm Saturday to a two-story structure and made what it calls an "interior offensive attack." Two occupants who were inside the building were able to get out unhurt before firefighters arrived. The preliminary investigation says the cause of the fire is undetermined and under investigation. It estimated the loss at about $11,000, mostly due to structural damage. 


Big 12 Quickly Working to Expand Before Texas, OU Departures

UNDATED (AP) — The Big 12 quickly moved into expansion mode with Texas and Oklahoma preparing to leave for the SEC. There will be no perfect replacements for the only two Big 12 teams to win national championships. And there will be no teams coming from other Power Five leagues. Cincinnati, Central Florida, BYU and Houston are four likely expansion candidates. That's a top 10 team, a huge school that recently had a perfect season, an independent with a nationwide fan base and a Texas team in the nation's fourth-largest city. Texas and Oklahoma will start SEC play no later than 2025.


These area headlines are curated by KPR news staffers, including J. Schafer, Laura Lorson, Kaye McIntyre and Tom Parkinson. Our headlines are generally posted by 10 am weekdays. This news summary is made possible by KPR listener-members. Become one today!  

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