Archives for February 2016

Prayer Vigil For Hesston Victims

The corwd was estimated to be more than a thousand who gathered in Hesston last night for a prayer vigil in remembrance of the mass shooting victims at Excel Industries. Ten local pastors joined in the service.

Meanwhile, eight patients are still being treated at Wichita hospitals from their injuries. Via Christi Saint Francis says one person remains in critical condition, while five others are in fair condition. Wesley Medical Center says one person is serious, while another is in fair condition. ALl patients who were taken to Newton Medical Center were either treated and released, or transferred to Wichita.

Lawmakers: School Finance Fight Wasting Money

A long-running school finance case is proving costly for the state of Kansas and four school districts. The Wichita Eagle reports state Republican leaders argue money spent on the case could be used instead in classrooms. But an attorney for the Wichita school district argues the legal fees are small compared with the money on the line for the districts, which contend the state is not adequately funding schools.

Hutchinson School Buses Damaged By Fire

Fire officials say seven Hutchinson school buses were damaged in a fire that apparently was started by a discarded cigarette. The fire was reported Saturday night just south of the Durham School Services in Hutchinson. Firefighters doused the blaze within 15 minutes. No one was injured.

Gunman Rampage In Harvey County

Shock, horror and chaos. Those are the words that employees at Excel Industries are using to describe one of their own coworkers walking into the building and gunning down people like they were toy soldiers. By the time an heroic Hesston Police officer stormed into the building and opened fire on Cedrick Ford, the man had left a path of carnage from Newton to the Excell Industries Plant in Hesston. We still don’t have an exact number of the dead, but sheriff T. Walton said late last night that he believes 4-to-7 people were killed by Ford. All of them were inside the Excel Plant. As many as 14 others were wounded.

Meanwhile, the plant will remain closed today. The governor has ordered flags to fly at half staff in memory of the victims.

Authorities have ended a standoff at Ford’s trailer home in Newton. It was believed Ford’s roommate was holed up inside the home, but by 11pm last night, a SWAT Team determined there was, in fact, nobody there.

Transgender Sues KS Over Birth Certificate

A transgender activist is suing Kansas over its refusal to update her gender on her birth certificate. The Wichita Eagle reports Topeka resident Stephanie Mott filed the lawsuit against the Kansas Department of Health and Environment last week. KDHE denied Mott’s request to amend her birth certificate to list her gender as female. A KDHE spokeswoman says the agency does not comment on pending litigation.

Three Hurt In El Dorado Crash

Three people hurt after a bad crash in El Dorado Wednesday. Police say it happened about 9pm last night near Central and Boyer Road on the west side of the city. One person suffered critical injuries. Two others had less serious injuries. No other details of the crash are known.

Shockers Beat Loyola of Chicago 76-54

And a quick sports note. The Shockers handily defeated Loyola of CHicago last night 76-54. Ron Baker nailed three 3-balls to finish with 19 points. The Shocks are now 22-7 overall, 15-2 in the Valley.

KS House Approves Vehicle Registration Increase

Kansas would increase its vehicle registration fees to help its Highway Patrol put more troopers on the state’s highways under a bill the state Senate approved. The Senate on Tuesday voted for a measure that boosts the fee for each vehicle’s registration by $3.25. The measure goes next to the House. Of the increase, $2 will go to the patrol and $1.25 to the state’s center in Hutchinson for training law enforcement officers. The measure would allow the patrol to hire an additional 75 troopers.

Lawmakers Consider Changing KS Bill Of Rights

Kansas legislators are considering changing the Kansas Bill of Rights to include the right to hunt, trap and fish. The resolution would add a section to the state constitution preserving hunting and fishing as a preferred way to manage wildlife. Several lawmakers say it would prevent future legislation from infringing on the right to hunt and fish. The measure now goes to the Senate.

Members Say Machinist Union Is Missing $3.5 Million

Findings from that big Machinist Union audit are being released. Last week, we told you the union offices near I-235 and Meridian were shut down. IAM District 70 President Frank Molina was suspended amid what the union called an investigation into business practices and procedures. Reporters were not allowed inside. Several members leaving the meeting said the union is missing about $3.5 million dollars.