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Headlines for Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Highway Patrol: 1 Person Dies After Icy Roads Cause Crash in Northwest Kansas

OVERBROOK, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Highway Patrol reports an 8-year-old girl died in a three-vehicle wreck caused by icy roads in northeast Kansas. The patrol said the collision occurred Monday on U.S. Highway 56 near Overbrook in Osage County.  The patrol reports a truck driving westbound on the highway lost control on icy roads, crossed the center line and hit a Ford pickup truck head-on, and a third vehicle rear-ended the Ford.  Cassie Ralston, of Scranton, a passenger in the Ford truck, was killed. Three other people were taken to hospitals. The crash came as a system carrying freezing temperatures and strong winds moved across Kansas. A few thousand customers in Wichita lost power Monday morning but no other serious accidents or injuries have been reported.

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Kansas Had 10-Year High for Deer-Related Crashes in 2018

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The state transportation agency says Kansas hit a 10-year high for deer-related crashes last year.  The agency says 10,734 deer-related wrecks were reported in 2018 in Kansas. The Department of Transportation says that accounted for 16.5% of total wrecks for the year.  The department's big game coordinator, Levi Jaster, said the increase in crashes is partly because of an increase in the deer population. Disease reduced the population beginning in 2008 until 2013, which is when the agency recorded the lowest number of deer-related wrecks in the past 10 years.  The Wichita Eagle reports the deer population has been increasing since then. Three people died in deer-related accidents last year. The highest number of deer-related wrecks in 2018 was in Sedgwick County, which had 418.

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Kansas Parks Agency to Consider Turkey Hunting Restrictions

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission will vote this week on whether to restrict turkey hunting harvest in parts of Kansas for at least two years. The commission will take up two measures Thursday in Scott City. A proposal from state biologists would reduce spring turkey tag limits to one per person and another would cancel the fall turkey season, beginning in 2020-21, for segments of the state. The Topeka Capital-Journal reports the proposals would affect most of northeast Kansas; south-central Kansas and southeast Kansas.  Kent Fricke, small game coordinator for wildlife agency, said the proposals are part of the agency's strategy to respond to a decade-long decline in the turkey population in Kansas.

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Cold Front Sets Record Lows in 6 Kansas Cities

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A cold front that froze much of Kansas set at least six records for low temperatures. The National Weather Service reports Wichita, Salina, Russell, Dodge City, Garden City and Medicine Lodge set low temperature records early Tuesday The lowest temperature was in Garden City, which dropped to minus 1, breaking the record of 7 set in 2018. The highest temperature of the six cities was 8 in Wichita, which breaking the former record of 9. Wichita, Salina, Dodge City and Medicine Lodge broke records set in 1911. Much of Kansas experienced below freezing temperatures after an arctic air mass moved from the Rocky Mountains to northern New England Monday, with forecasters saying much of the affected region would see record-breaking cold temperatures Tuesday.

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As Snow Moves Toward East Coast, Bitter Cold Hits Midwest

CHICAGO (AP) — Much of the snow that was supposed to fall in the Midwest has come down and now it's time for the main event: Record-breaking cold. The National Weather Service says Tuesday and Wednesday may see record cold from the southern Plains to the Mississippi Valley to the Great Lakes and beyond, thanks to what it calls an "arctic airmass." Meteorologist Kevin Birk says the high temperature in Chicago is expected to reach 21 degrees (-6 Celsius), seven degrees lower than the previous record for November 12.  Monday's weather made driving difficult in much of the Midwest. Authorities said the icy road conditions were to blame for the deaths of three adults in Michigan and an 8-year-old girl in Kansas.  In Chicago, a plane landing at O'Hare International Airport on Monday slid across the runway. No one was injured.

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Approximately 1,200 Flights Cancelled at O'Hare Airport

CHICAGO (AP) — Between 2 and 6 inches of snow fell in northern Illinois, forcing the cancellation of about 1,200 flights at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport.  The National Weather Service said Monday night that snowfall has ended in northern Illinois, but lake effect snow will persist in northern Indiana into early Tuesday.  In addition to flight cancellations, O'Hare was plagued by delays that averaged 80 minutes. Midway International Airport reports 94 flight cancellations and delays averaging 15 minutes.  Icy conditions caused a plane to slide off an O'Hare runway as it landed Monday morning. None of the 38 passengers or three crew members on the flight from Greensboro, North Carolina, was injured.  The weather service expects temperatures to plummet overnight Monday. The forecast is for a high of 21 degrees (-6 Celsius) Tuesday, seven degrees lower than the previous record set for November 12.

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GOP Kansas State School Board Member Running for US Senate

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ A Republican member of the Kansas State Board of Education who shares retiring GOP U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts's last name is running to replace him in Washington. Steve Roberts of Overland Park filed paperwork Tuesday with the state to claim a spot on the ballot in the August primary. Pat Roberts is not seeking re-election after four terms. Steve Roberts is a math tutor who developed his own online math course who has served on the state school board since 2013. Running for the Senate means he can't seek another term on the board in 2020. Other Republicans running for the Senate include ex-Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall of western Kansas, Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle and former Kansas City Chiefs player David Lindstrom. 

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Cerner Corporation Cuts 130 Jobs, Including 60 in Kansas City

NORTH KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Cerner Corp. has cut 130 jobs, including 60 in the Kansas City area. The layoffs announced Tuesday come after the North Kansas City-based company laid off 255 workers in early September. The Kansas City Star reports the health care information technology company said the job reductions come as it looks for ways to diversify its current operations. Cerner is the Kansas City area's largest private employer, with about 14,000 workers across the metropolitan area. Cerner says it remains committed to creating jobs in Kansas City and has hired several thousand workers this year. The company recently notified federal regulators that Chief Operating Office Mike Nill will step down at the beginning of next year. The 23-year veteran is among three top executives to leave in recent months.

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2 People Dead After Shooting in Southeast Topeka

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Police say a shooting in southeast Topeka left two people dead. Topeka police Lt. Andrew Beightel said the shooting occurred Tuesday in the Highland Park community. One of the victims was found outside and the other was indoors. Both died at the scene. He said police are searching for three or four males who witnesses said ran from the scene. No arrests have been made. The victims' identities weren't immediately released.

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Missouri Mother Sentenced to Life for Drowning Infant Son

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri woman who drowned her 6-month-old son in a bathtub has been sentenced to life in prison.  The St. Joseph News-Press reports that Sydney Jones was sentenced last week for child abuse resulting in death. Jurors found her guilty in July after a witness testified that he found Jones holding her son, Keith Lars III, down in the water in 2017.  St. Joseph police testified that she acted strangely, saying she was "a child of God." A psychologist said she believed state mental health workers missed a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, noting that Jones said she felt possessed.  Jones said during the hearing that, "I wake up every day and think I couldn't save my son." A jail official testified that Jones had gotten into several fights while incarcerated.

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Man Arrested After Pair of Northeast Kansas Police Chases

SILVER LAKE, Kan. (AP) — Authorities say a man has been arrested after a pair of police chases in northeast Kansas.  The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that it started when a driver fled from Shawnee County sheriff's deputies in a stolen Toyota Camry. The Camry then was found crashed early Monday in a ditch in neighboring Jackson County.  Jackson County Sheriff Tim Morse says no one was around the Camry. Deputies then spotted a stolen Volkswagen and suspected it was there to pick up the driver of the crashed Camry.  Another pursuit began and ended with the driver rolling on an icy road. The driver and passenger were treated at area hospitals before the driver was booked into jail.  Morse says the Volkswagen had been reported stolen from Lawrence and the Camry from Silver Lake.

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Record: KCK Police Officer Tried to Keep Victims Quiet After Cop Made Threat

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Court records say an off-duty Kansas police officer who told a bar server that "I have my gun on me. I'll shoot you" was initially allowed to keep his service weapon after a responding officer urged witnesses not to press charges.  The Kansas City Star obtained the records after a state agency revoked the law enforcement license for former Kansas City, Kansas, police officer Robert Ward.  The 41-year-old eventually was sentenced to one year of probation for assault and possession of a firearm while under the influence after other officers raised concerns about his conduct last year at The Peanut bar in Mission.  The officer who initially tried to cover for Ward no longer works for the Mission police department. Police didn't say whether that officer quit or was fired.

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KU's Dole Institute to Honor Temple Grandin with Dole Leadership Prize

LAWRENCE, Kan. (KPR) – The Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas has announced that it will honor Temple Grandin, a professor of animal science and advocate for people with autism, with the 2019 Dole Leadership Prize.  Grandin will accept the award at a public program at the institute at 7 pm on December 11.  The program will be free and open to the public. A livestream of the event will be available at doleinstitute.org.  “Temple Grandin is a trailblazer,” Dole Institute Director Bill Lacy said. “She not only overcame widespread ignorance about autism and helped lessen the stigma around it, she used the challenges she faced to bring an entirely new perspective to how domestic animals are cared for and treated.”

Diagnosed with autism at the age of 2, Grandin did not speak until she was 4. Despite her childhood doctor’s belief that she had brain damage, a common misunderstanding in the 1940s, she went on to earn a degree in psychology from Franklin Pierce College in 1970, a master’s degree in animal science from Arizona State University and her doctorate in animal science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1989. Today she teaches courses on livestock behavior at Colorado State University and consults with the livestock industry on facility design, livestock handling and animal welfare.  In 2010, HBO made a semi-autobiographical movie about her life, starring Claire Danes in the leading role. The movie, titled “Temple Grandin,” was nominated for 15 Primetime Emmy Awards, winning seven.

The Dole Leadership Prize is awarded annually to an individual or group whose public service leadership inspires others. The award includes a $25,000 cash award. Previous winners of the Dole Leadership Prize include Nelson Mandela, former Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko, former Polish President Lech Walesa, Congressman John Lewis, former Secretary of State James Baker, and former Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

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Trailer with Thousands of Meals for Homeless Vets Stolen

LENEXA, Kan. (AP) — Lenexa police are investigating the theft of thousands of meals intended for homeless veterans. KMBC reports a trailer containing meals packed by bank employees last week was stolen last week. The meals were intended for Friends In Service of Heroes, a veteran service organization. The trailer carried 12,100 meal packets, with each packet making eight meals — for a total of nearly 97,000 meals. The food was going to be delivered to the Kansas City VA Medical Center Nov. 21. Police say the 5-by-8 interstate trailer was parked at the Friends In Service Of Heroes headquarters in Lenexa when it was stolen between 8 p.m. Saturday and Monday morning. The trailer has two bumper stickers with the FISH logo and Johnson County, Kansas, license plate 133 KMA.

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Wellington Couple Donates $1.6 Million to Kansas State University

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — The estate of a Wellington couple donated $1.6 million to establish scholarships for students in Kansas State's College of Business Administration. The gift from Otis and Wanda Gilliland established the Gilliland Kansas State Family Scholarship. It creates match opportunities for 50 scholarships for business students. The university announced Tuesday new gifts of $30,000 will be matched with $30,000 from the Gillilands' gift. And $10,000 will go into a scholarship fund to make $2,000 scholarships immediately available to students for up to five years. The remaining $50,000 will be in an endowment for future students. Otis and Wanda Gilliland both graduated from Kansas State in 1949. Otis Gilliland was an engineer for Boeing in Wichita before retiring in 1985. Wanda Gilliland died in 2013, and Otis Gilliland died in July 2019.

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Authorities: Kansas Man Killed in Southeast Nebraska Crash

FAIRBURY, Neb. (AP) — Authorities say a Kansas man died after a car he was in crashed off a rural road in southeast Nebraska. The crash occurred Sunday, about 2 miles northwest of Fairbury. The Jefferson County (Nebraska) Sheriff's Office says deputies found two injured people at the site. They'd been ejected. One died later at a Fairbury hospital. He's been identified as Cody Craig, who lived in Hanover, Kansas. The second, unidentified person was taken to a Lincoln hospital. Investigators suspect alcohol consumption was a factor in the crash.

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Missouri Congressman Criticizes Kansas City Church Action During King Street Campaign

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Democratic Congressman Emanuel Cleaver is criticizing the tactics of a group that led a successful campaign to remove Martin Luther King's name from a Kansas City street.  During an appearance Sunday on MSNBC's "PoliticsNation with Al Sharpton," Cleaver was particularly upset that some "Save the Paseo" members staged a silent protest during a rally at a black church the Sunday before last week's election , which restored the name of the street to The Paseo.  Cleaver, the first black mayor of Kansas City, said even the Ku Klux Klan didn't enter churches at rallies during the civil rights movement.  The Kansas City Star reports Tim Smith, a black man who organized the "Save the Paseo" protest, criticized Cleaver for using racially divisive rhetoric. He said his group, which has white and black members, avoided racial arguments during the campaign.

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Family of Wichita Man Killed on 2017 Swatting Call Seeks $25 Million

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — The family of an unarmed man who was fatally shot by police while responding to a bogus emergency call is seeking $25 million in damages in a lawsuit.  The Wichita Eagle reports that recent documents filed in the lawsuit brought by Andrew Finch's family outline the damages they are seeking for his death and their pain and suffering. The 28-year-old Finch was fatally shot by police in December 2017.  Officials have said that officers feared Finch was reaching for a firearm when he was shot, not knowing that a hoaxer had reported a fake homicide and hostage situation at Finch's home.  The lawsuit filed by Finch's family is pending. The city has already spent nearly $250,000 to defend against the lawsuit.

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