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Headlines for Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Longtime KU Broadcaster Max Falkenstien Dies at 95

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — Max Falkenstien, the affable and silver-tongued "Voice of the Jayhawks" who brought Kansas football and basketball into the homes of fans for six decades, died Monday. He was 95.  The school announced his death in a statement. No cause was given.  Falkenstien did his first broadcast of a Kansas basketball game during the 1946 NCAA Tournament in Kansas City, where the Jayhawks played Oklahoma A&M. He took over as the play-by-play voice the following spring, and would hold the job for 39 years before switching to the commentator's role in 1984.  He retired from Jayhawk Radio Network broadcasts after the 2005-06 basketball season.  Falkenstien was a banker by trade, retiring from the Douglas County Bank in Lawrence in 1994.  But his passion was broadcasting the Jayhawks, and fans across the country simply adored him.  He's the only non-player to have a jersey — No. 60 — hanging in the rafters of Allen Fieldhouse.  Falkenstien was born and raised in Lawrence and enlisted in the Army Air Corps after high school. He earned a mathematics degree from KU in 1948, a full two years after he was on the microphone for his first basketball game.  Falkenstien is survived by his wife of 70 years, Isobel. The couple had two children, Kurt and Jane, along with three grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

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3.1 Magnitude Earthquake Rattles Central Kansas

SOLOMON, Kan. (AP) — The U.S. Geological Survey says a 3.1 magnitude earthquake has rattled central Kansas.  The quake was reported around 4:30 am today (TUE) about 5.6 miles southwest of Solomon.  No damage has been reported.  Scientists say damage is not likely in earthquakes below magnitude 4.0.  The Kansas Geological Survey says two other earthquakes with a magnitude greater than 3 have been reported this month in the state. They include a 3.2 magnitude quake on July 1 and a 3.7 magnitude quake on July 5. Both of those were in Rooks County.


Unidentified Woman Found Dead in Creek in 1986 Exhumed

SALINA, Kan. (AP) — Authorities have exhumed a woman's remains that were found more than 30 years ago in a shallow creek near Salina. The Saline County sheriff's office says in a Facebook post that the reason for unearthing her remains Monday was to obtain a DNA sample that might help law enforcement identify her. The woman, who has been nicknamed "Miss Molly," was found face down in January 1986 in Mulberry Creek near Interstate 70. KAKE-TV reports that the woman sustained injuries consistent with being beaten on the right side of her head and was either tossed or pushed over the bridge railing and fell 30 feet into the shallow creek where she drowned. An autopsy suggested that she had recently given birth. She was 5-foot-5-inches and weighed about 125 pounds.


Death of Man Found Near Cemetery Investigated as Suspicious

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Authorities are investigating the death of a man whose body was found behind a Kansas City, Kansas, cemetery as suspicious. KSHB-TV reports that police say officers responded around 2:30 p.m. Monday and found the body in a wooded area. Police provided no information about the identity of the man. Police say his was severely decomposed so an autopsy will be needed to determine a cause of death.


Man Admits to Threatening Workers for Anti-Abortion Group

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A 22-year-old Wichita man has pleaded guilty to threatening to rape and murder employees of an anti-abortion group. U.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister said in a news release that Christopher Thompson pleaded guilty Monday to making a threat. He admitted that he made three threatening phone calls on Aug. 14, 2018, to Operation Rescue, an anti-abortion organization with headquarters in Wichita. Thompson was originally indicted on four counts of transmitting threats through interstate communication. Prosecutors said that besides threatening the employees, he also threatened to kill and rape their family members. The Wichita Eagle reports Operation Rescue said on its website that the caller made the threats after expressing anger over a 13-year-old article on the website. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 15.


1 Kansas Woman Dead, 1 Seriously Injured in ATV Crash

CUMMINGS, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Highway Patrol says a 19-year-old woman died and another person was seriously injured when an all-terrain vehicle carrying four people crashed. The patrol says Jentri Lynn Fowler, of Cummings, died after the crash Monday evening three miles southwest of Cummings in Atchison County. The patrol says the ATV's driver lost control of the vehicle, which went into a ditch and overturned several times. An 18-year-old passenger in the ATV was seriously injured. One other passenger suffered minor injuries and another was uninjured. None of the four people on the ATV was wearing a safety restraint.


Kansas Congresswoman Sharice Davids Draws First GOP Challenger in 3rd District

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The former leader of a national disability rights group has become the first Republican candidate seeking to unseat Kansas Democratic Congresswoman Sharice Davids.  Sara Hart Weir kicked off her campaign Monday in the 3rd Congressional District in the Kansas City area. She served more than four years as president and CEO of the National Down Syndrome Society before stepping down earlier this year.  The 37-year-old Weir touted her work on legislation in 2014 to create savings accounts with tax advantages for the disabled and their families.  Davids is the only Kansas Democrat in Congress. She ousted Republican Congressman Kevin Yoder last year and gained national attention as a Native American and LGBTQ lawmaker.  Former Kansas Republican Party Chairwoman Amanda Adkins also is considering running for the seat.


Missouri Democratic Congressman Emanuel Cleaver Calls for Impeachment Inquiry

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Congressman Emanuel Cleaver is joining other Democrats in calling for an inquiry into whether President Donald Trump should be impeached.  Cleaver on Monday issued a statement saying a special report and testimony before two House committees last week by special counsel Robert Mueller convinced him the president committed one or more instances of obstruction of justice while in office.  Cleaver, a Democrat from Kansas City, said Congress has a constitutional responsibility to further investigate evidence presented by Mueller's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.  Cleaver didn't support drafting articles of impeachment against Trump but said he hoped Congress would enforce subpoenas for more information.  An Associated Press survey on Friday found about 100 Democrats in the 435-member House favor opening an impeachment inquiry.


National Glass Museum in Wellington Closes Temporarily

WELLINGTON, Kan. (AP) — The National Glass Museum in Wellington is temporarily closed after the front of the building collapsed. The front of the museum and most of the front brick facade collapsed overnight Friday. KAKE-TV reports the collapse is blamed on heavy rains during the year. The landlord hopes to rebuild and reopen the museum by the end of September. Pam Meyer, president of the National Depress Glass Association, said the building had been leaning for some time. She said the group plans to stay in Wellington. The museum displays American-made glassware from the Great Depression era. None of the museum pieces were damaged.


16-Year-Old in Custody in Killing of Another 16-Year-Old

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A 16-year-old who was wanted for questioning in a deadly Topeka shooting has turned himself in to police.  Police say the teen was taken into juvenile custody after surrendering Saturday. He is being held on suspicion of first-degree murder.  Police began searching for him after last week's deadly shooting of 16-year-old Joaquin AJ McKinney in what appeared to be a drive-by shooting. McKinney was found in a car in the southeast part of the city and pronounced dead at a hospital.  After the shooting, police asked the public to be on the lookout for a small, blueish four-door passenger car. Police haven't released a motive.


1 Arrested in Shooting that Killed Airman, Wounded 2 Others

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A 25-year-old man has been arrested in a Kansas shooting that wounded an airman for McConnell Air Force Base and injured three others.  The Wichita Eagle reports that Markeithen McClaine is jailed on $500,000 bond in the death of 20-year-old Chancelor Williams, of Spartanburg, South Carolina. No criminal charges were immediately filed.  Wichita police Officer Kevin Wheeler said in a news release that a man fired a gun into a crowd early Saturday after a disturbance broke out during a party. Williams was pronounced dead at the scene. Among the three who were wounded, only one of them remained hospitalized Sunday. Police say she is expected to survive.  Col. Richard Tanner, commander of the 22nd Air Refueling Wing, said in a statement that the base "is deeply saddened by the loss of one of our airmen."


Kansas Senator Returns to GOP After Working for Independent Candidate

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas state senator is back with the Republican party after leaving it to join independent Greg Orman's campaign for governor.  The Wichita Eagle reports Senator John Doll, of Garden City, changed his party affiliation a few weeks ago.  He had been an independent since March 2018, when he became Orman's running mate in their unsuccessful bid for the governor's office.  Doll lost all his committee assignments after he became an independent under a Senate rule that strips senators of committee spots if they change parties. Senate President Susan Wagle's office said Doll will again receive committee assignments.  Doll said he has never voted along strictly party lines. He hasn't decided whether he will run for re-election in 2020.  His decision gives the Republicans a 29-11 majority in the Senate.


Former KU Football Player Pleads Not Guilty in Assault Case

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A former University of Kansas football player has pleaded not guilty to allegations that he choked a woman and pointed a shotgun in her face. Nineteen-year-old Kenny Evel Bastida waived his right to a preliminary hearing Tuesday and pleaded not guilty to aggravated assault and aggravated battery and two misdemeanors, criminal damage to property and possession of marijuana. The Lawrence Journal-World reports a woman told university police that Bastida assaulted her May 15 at Stouffer Place Apartments on campus. She said he then loaded a shell into a shotgun and pointed at her face. KU Athletics officials say Bastida, a linebacker from Pompano Beach, Florida, was no longer with the football team a month before the alleged attack but didn't say why. His trial is scheduled for Nov. 6.


3rd Kansas Man Sentenced in Shooting Death in Joplin

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — A third Kansas man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in the death of a Joplin, Missouri, man during a robbery.  Twenty-one-year-old Azaiah Forester, of Columbus, Kansas, was sentenced Monday in the fatal shooting of 21-year-old Taven Williams in January 2017.  The Joplin Globe report s Williams was killed when the three suspects and a fourth unidentified person went to the Joplin home of Paul Haney to rob Haney of marijuana. Williams was shot when he tried to help Haney, who survived a gunshot wound to the shoulder.  Two other defendants from Columbus, 21-year-old Brock Robinson and 24-year-old Erik Jones, were each sentenced previously to 15 years in prison.  Robinson claimed it was Jones who shot and killed Williams.


Man Sentenced After Stealing Nearly $400,000 in Property

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ A 37-year-old man who stole nearly $400,000 in property from a Wichita home has been sentenced to nearly 3 and a half years in prison.   Investigators say Samuel Haley took antique jewelry, a Civil War-era revolver and other property from an eastern Wichita home in April 2017. The Wichita Eagle reports Haley was arrested after a man he contacted about the jewelry called police. A detective posed as a potential buyer and arrested Haley at a Wichita hotel. Court records say some of the jewelry was found in Haley's backpack and more was in a storage facility. Police returned most of the stolen items to their owners. Haley pleaded no contest in April to burglary and felony theft. He was sentenced Monday and ordered to pay about $71,000 in restitution.  

No Bond for Man Accused in Wisconsin Brothers' Disappearance

BRAYMER, Mo. (AP) — A sheriff says recent heavy rains hampered the search for two Wisconsin brothers missing in Missouri.  Several law enforcement agencies have searched since July 21 for Nick and Justin Diemel, who were in northwest Missouri on a business trip for the livestock operation they operate in Bonduel, Wisconsin.  Authorities say the case is considered a death investigation but the brothers' bodies haven't been found.  Callaway County Sheriff Jerry Galloway said Monday several inches of rain during the weekend slowed down the search. But he said authorities are pursuing "a lot" of leads.  Earlier Monday, a man charged with tampering with a rental truck used by the Diemel brothers was denied bond.  Charging documents indicate that Garland "Joey" Nelson abandoned the truck in a commuter parking lot after the brothers visited one of his farm operations.


Newly Renovated Eisenhower Museum Reopens in Kansas

ABILENE, Kan. (AP) — A museum honoring President Dwight Eisenhower in his childhood home in Kansas has reopened after undergoing a massive, yearlong renovation.  Visitors got their first glimpse Monday of modernized exhibits in the 25,000-square-foot museum. They feature new graphic panels, display cases, theater experiences and digital interactive stations.  The original schedule was to open in time for the 75th anniversary of D-Day in early June, but the federal government shutdown delayed the timeline.  During the work, museum exhibits were moved to the library portion of the 22-acre complex. It also includes the home in which the future president and supreme commander of the Allied forces during World War II spent most of his childhood.  The formal dedication is planned for October 12 to coincide with Ike's birthday weekend.


Washburn Professor Sues over Fluorescent Lighting

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A Washburn University professor alleges in a lawsuit that officials required her to teach in a room illuminated by fluorescent light despite knowing she had a neurological disability triggered by that type of light.  The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that the suit filed earlier this month in federal court is Leslie Reynard's second against the school, where she teaches in the communications department. Her other lawsuit alleges that the university retaliated against her after she filed a sex discrimination complaint.  In the second suit, Reynard seeks damages in excess of $75,000. The university has declined to comment.


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