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Headlines for Wednesday, February 19, 2020

 

Kansas Federal Judge Reprimanded for Harassment Resigns

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A federal judge in Kansas, who was publicly reprimanded for sexually harassing female employees and having an extramarital affair with an offender, has resigned. U.S. District Judge Carlos Murguia submitted his resignation letter Tuesday. He said the resignation will be effective April 1. In his letter, Murguia, who is based in Kansas City, Kansas, said it has become clear that he could no longer serve effectively on the federal court. He was reprimanded in September for his sexual improprieties, as well as for being habitually late to court proceedings and meetings. He was appointed to the judgeship in 1999.

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Crossing Guard Killed Protecting Children Lauded as Hero

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — The son of a school crossing guard who was struck and killed in Kansas City, Kansas, described his father as “selfless." The Kansas City Star reports that Bart Nill, said his father, 88-year-old Bob Nill, was dedicated to the job and wasn't surprised that he saved two children from being hit before he was struck Tuesday near Christ the King Parish School. He died at a hospital. Bart Nill said that his father “loved kids so much." The driver of a black sedan that hit the guard was taken to a hospital, but no children were hurt. The school said on social media that Bob Nill was a hero.

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Crossing Guard Hit and Killed in Kansas City, Kansas

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Kansas City, Kansas, police say a crossing guard died after being hit by a car while pushing children out of the way of an oncoming car near an elementary school. Police spokesman Jonathon Westbrook says the guard was hit early Tuesday near the Christ the King Parish school. The guard was employed through the city. Government officials said in a news release witnesses reported the guard was hit while he was pushing children out of the way. No children were injured. The driver of a black sedan that hit the guard was taken to a hospital.

Principal: KCK Crossing Guard Fatally Struck by Car Saved 2 Kids

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — An elementary school principal says a crossing guard who died after being hit by a vehicle in Kansas City, Kansas, saved the lives of two children before the impact. Police spokesman Jonathon Westbrook says the guard was hit early Tuesday near the Christ the King Parish school. School principal Cathy Fithian said two students were getting ready to cross the street when the crossing guard yelled at them to stop, preventing them from being in the car's path. No children were injured. The driver of a black sedan that hit the guard was taken to a hospital.

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Deadly Topeka Hit-and-Run Victim Identified as 41-Year-Old

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The victim of a deadly hit-and-run in Topeka has been identified as a 41-year-old man. Police said Tuesday that Emerson Downing was the person who was run over near the Soldier Trail in the northern part of the city. Chad Thomas Cuevas is jailed on $1 million bond on suspicion of premeditated first-degree murder. He doesn't have an attorney. Witnesses reported hearing an argument Monday before Downing was struck. He died at a hospital. Police said officers found the vehicle a short time later and took the driver in for questioning.

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State of Kansas Sues Victims, Others for Damages After Fatal Crash

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) _ The state of Kansas is suing the victims and other parties involved in a fatal crash on Interstate 435 two years ago. In February 2018, a truck hit a van on the interstate in Leawood, killing two sisters and injuring three family members. On Tuesday, the state sued the parents of the children, the truck driver and the owners of the truck and a trailer involved in the crash. The state is seeking to recover $116,832 to repair a highway barrier damaged during the crash. The Kansas City Star reports that it's not unusual for governments to file claims for damages and costs after traffic crashes. 

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Man Accused of Selling Fake Tide Sentenced to Probation

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A Kansas man accused of selling fake Tide laundry detergent has been fined $1,000 and sentenced to a year of probation. The Kansas attorney general's office say 44-year-old Brian Glenn, of Baldwin City, was sentenced after pleading guilty last week to one misdemeanor county of counterfeiting. The state previously dismissed a felony counterfeiting charge just before the case was set to go to trial, citing the need for further testing of the laundry soap. In 2016, law enforcement agents and Procter & Gamble representatives raided Glenn's home.

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Kansas Considers More Disclosure on Officer-Involved Deaths

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas lawmakers are considering measures to require the public disclosure of information from investigations when a law enforcement officer kills someone and isn’t charged with a crime over the death.  But law enforcement officials expressed strong reservations about two disclosure bills during a House Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday. Critics said requiring disclosure could endanger witnesses or make them less likely to cooperate fully and could allow private or embarrassing information about the deceased or their families to circulate. The bills were inspired by the fatal shooting by police of a Kansas City-area teenager in January 2018 and his mother called for greater transparency.

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Woman Pleads Not Guilty in Deaths of Kansas Carnival Workers

GREAT BEND, Kan. (KWCH-TV) — A woman suspected in the killings of a Kansas couple who were working as carnival vendors pleaded not guilty to several charges. Kimberly Younger, of McIntosh, Florida, entered the plea Wednesday in the death of Alfred and Pauline Carpenter, who were working as vendors at the Barton County Fair in July 2018 when they were killed, driven to Arkansas and buried. She is charged with six counts, including capital murder. KWCH reports that during Wednesday's arraignment, prosecutors said they would not pursue the death penalty against Younger. Authorities say the Carpenters were killed after one suspect posed as a carnival mafia boss and ordered the killings.

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KU's Oliver Hall Set to Close; School Expects Lower Demand for Campus Housing

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — The University of Kansas plans to close an old residence hall rather than spend millions of dollars to renovate it. School officials say Oliver Hall, which was built in 1966, will not reopen. The hall has been closed since the end of the last school year. Chancellor Douglas Girod told The Lawrence Journal-World it didn't make sense to put $25 million to $40 million into the hall. He said projections show there would not be a demand for living space in Oliver if it were renovated. University spokeswoman Erinn Barcomb-Peterson says the school's nine other residence halls are about 95% full.

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Trial Delayed in Washburn Football Player's Fatal Shooting

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The trial will be delayed for a man charged with killing a Washburn University player and wounding a player who went on to play in the NFL. Eighteen-year-old Francisco Alejandro Mendez was scheduled to go on trial Tuesday but it was postponed while he is tested to determine if he is competent to stand trial. He is charged with first-degree murder in the April 2019 death of Dwane (dwon) Simmons. He is also charged with attempted murder in the shooting of Corey Ballentine, who played for the New York Giants this year. Authorities say the shooting occurred in Topeka just hours after Ballentine learned he had been drafted.

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Wichita Man Killed While Changing Flat Tire Near Ottawa

OTTAWA, Kan. (The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle) — A 73-year-old Wichita man who was changing a flat tire died when he was hit by a semi-trailer truck on a Kansas interstate. The Kansas Highway Patrol reports the truck drove away from the crash early Tuesday on Interstate 35 in Franklin County. The driver was later stopped by law enforcement officers near Gardner, about 15 miles from the crash scene near Ottawa. Troopers said the truck driver drove over the edge line in the right lane and struck and killed Sidney Leroy Huff. A 23-year-old passenger in the car was not injured.

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Case for Kansas Priest's Sainthood Could Soon Advance
 
WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — An effort to have a Kansas priest who died in a North Korean prison camp reach sainthood could take an important step forward next month. The Wichita Eagle reports that a panel of archbishops and cardinals will meet March 10 to vote on whether Emil Kapaun is worthy of the title of "Venerable," which is the second step in the process toward sainthood in the Catholic Church. Pope Francis will make the final determination. Kapaun was named a "Servant of God," the first step towards canonization, by the church in 1993. If the Venerable title is bestowed, the church would begin the process of investigating alleged miracles attributed to Kapaun.

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KU Hires Air Force Assistant Wallace for Special Teams

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) _ The University of Kansas has hired Jonathan Wallace to coach special teams and running backs, completing an overhaul of coach Les Miles's staff as the Jayhawks head into Year 2 of the former national championship-winning coach's regime. Miles announced the hiring in a statement Tuesday. Wallace spent last season coaching tight ends at Air Force, and he spent the previous season at Bethel, a Division III school in Minnesota where he worked with recently promoted offensive coordinator Brent Dearmon.

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