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Weekend Headlines for September 9-10, 2017

Widow of Olathe Bar Shooting Victim Gets Reprive from Deportation

OLATHE, Kan. (AP) — The widow of an Indian national who was fatally shot in an apparent hate crime at a Kansas bar was facing deportation after his death meant she lost her U.S. resident status. The Kansas City Star reports U.S. Representative Kevin Yoder of Kansas and others were able to secure a 1-year visa for Sunayana Dumala of Olathe. But she is still seeking a way to become a permanent resident of the country. Dumala's husband, Srinivas Kuchibhotla, died in a February 22nd shooting at Austins Bar & Grill in Olathe. His friend and another man were wounded. He and his wife, also an India native, lived in the U.S. for 10 years. They married in 2012 and applied for a green card on his work visa.


Kansas Town Celebrates Christmas Early for Dying Boy

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Christmas trees are popping up in a small Kansas town as residents prepare to celebrate the holiday early for a 3-year-old boy with terminal cancer. The Wichita Eagle reports that the town of Lebo will celebrate Christmas on Sunday as a tribute to Christian Risner. Christian has been diagnosed with Rhabdoid kidney cancer, which has created tumors in his kidneys and lungs. He was placed in hospice last month. Doctors say he has less than three months to live. The Lebo Baptist Church is hosting a potluck where Santa will visit with toys. A horse-drawn sleigh will take Christian around town to look at the array of trees and holiday lights residents and businesses put up in solidarity. Christian's mother, Sarah Risner, says she's grateful to be his mother.


KU Law Professor Nominated for U.S. Attorney for Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — President Donald Trump has nominated a University of Kansas law professor to the state's top federal law enforcement post. If confirmed by the Senate, Stephen McAllister will become U.S. attorney for Kansas. He is now the state's solicitor general representing Kansas in appellate cases. U.S. Sens. Pat Roberts and Jerry Moran of Kansas made the announcement Friday. Moran said in a statement that McAllister's "bright legal mind and his litigation experience" qualify him for this role. McAllister clerked for Justices Byron White and Clarence Thomas at the U.S. Supreme Court. He also was in a private law practice in Washington. He joined in 1993 the faculty at the University of Kansas, where he teaches constitutional and federal civil rights law. There are 93 U.S. attorney offices in the country.


Baldwin Man Pleads Guilty to Raping Children for Years

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) — A Baldwin City man has pleaded guilty to raping two children for several years. The Lawrence Journal-World reports 54-year-old Edwin Wasson pleaded guilty Friday to two counts of rape. Prosecutors say he raped the first victim between 2002 and 2008 and the second child between 2013 and 2015. Wasson will be required to register immediately as a sex offender and to remain registered for the rest of his life. Attorneys on both sides requested a sentence of 24.5 years, or 12 years on each count to run consecutively. He will be sentenced October 20th. The victims are now 23 and 17 years old.


Brownback Approves Raises for Some State Workers

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Governor Sam Brownback has authorized a 2.5 percent pay increase for unclassified state employees in the executive branch who didn't qualify for salary increases approved by this year's Legislature. The order issued Thursday doesn't apply to classified workers who didn't qualify for the raise. The governor's office says in a news release only state lawmakers can approve those raises. It wasn't immediately clear how many people would be eligible for the raises, which take affect starting September 24th. The governor's statement also didn't indicate how much the order would cost the state. The funding would come from existing agency funds. The statement said most agencies will issue the raises through ongoing paychecks but others will use one-time funds to give a bonus equivalent to the 2.5 percent increase.


Official: Kansas Elections Office Not Contacted by FBI

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A top elections official says federal investigators examining Russian interference in the 2016 election have not contacted the Kansas secretary of state's office. Kansas elections director Brian Caskey also said Friday that he is unaware of any county election official in the state who may have been contacted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He says the FBI contacts counties directly, and he would not necessarily know that information. Caskey made the comments following his presentation at a Wichita meeting of civil rights advocates seeking to increase citizen participation in Kansas elections. He told the group the secretary of state's office is working on cybersecurity, without elaborating. He says the reason no U.S. vote counting system was breached is because those are not connected to the internet.


Lyon County Investigating Body Found in Burned Vehicle

EMPORIA, Kan. (AP) — Lyon County authorities are investigating the death of a person whose body was found in a burning vehicle. Sheriff Jeff Cope says deputies responded to a report of a suspicious vehicle in rural Lyon County about five miles east of Emporia. The vehicle had been burned at the location and deputies found the body inside. Cope says the death is being investigated as a possible homicide. No information on the person's identity has been released.

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