KRPS turns 25
PITTSBURG — Bob Walter is a news junkie. He’s a self-proclaimed jazz aficionado. He also loves classical music. So, one could imagine his excitement at 4 p.m., April 29, 1988.
“Oh, it was a tremendous moment,” Walter, the former dean of learning resources at Pittsburg State University, said. “It was a festive party.”
That “moment” was when KRPS began broadcasting from the campus of PSU. From the beginning, the station’s mix of NPR news, classi...
Debt to Chinese remains target
WASHINGTON (AP) — Despite what you may have heard, China isn’t the country’s biggest creditor. America is.
The bulk of the national debt — soon to exceed a staggering $17 trillion — is held by the Federal Reserve, Social Security system, various pension plans for civil service workers and military personnel, U.S. banks, mutual funds, private pension plans, insurance companies and individual domestic investors.
China is responsible for just a s...
Legendary musician Jones dies
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — When it comes to country music, George Jones was The Voice.
Other great singers have come and gone, but this fact remained inviolate until Jones passed away Friday at 81 in a Nashville hospital after a year of ill health.
“Today someone else has become the greatest living singer of traditional country music, but there will never be another George Jones,” said Bobby Braddock, the Country Music Hall of Fame songwriter who...
Sperm donor loses court battle to be in twins’ lives
TOPEKA (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court five years ago sided with the Kansas high court that Topekan Daryl Hendrix couldn’t be a part of the lives of two children conceived by artificial insemination using his sperm.
But The Topeka Capital-Journal reported that Hendrix said every day he thinks of the two children — twins, a boy, identified in court records only as K.C.H., and a girl, identified as K.M.H.
“I haven’t seen them since the day after t...
Lied Center marks 20th year
LAWRENCE (AP) — In the not-so-distant past, Deb Kraushaar had to hire off-duty school buses to transport elegantly dressed patrons of the arts up the hill from parking lots by Allen Fieldhouse to performances at Hoch Auditorium.
For shows she couldn’t schedule in Hoch after it burned — and there were many — Kraushaar, secretary of Kansas University’s Concert Series, juggled churches and other venues across town, and even Topeka. Not to mention...
Suspect wants to mention wife’s problems
KINGMAN (AP) — A former Kansas police instructor charged with killing his wife wants to introduce evidence at his trial about her personal problems, which he claims will support his claims that she committed suicide.
Attorneys for Brett T. Seacat asked during a hearing Wednesday to be allowed to introduce evidence about Vashti Seacat’s alleged suicide attempts, depression and multiple affairs.
His attorneys argue the evidence would support the...
U.S. says Syria used chemical weapons
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. intelligence has concluded with “varying degrees of confidence,” that the Syrian government has twice used chemical weapons in its fierce civil war, the White House and other top administration officials said Thursday.
However, officials also said more definitive proof was needed and the U.S. was not ready to escalate its involvement in Syria beyond non-lethal aid, despite President Barack Obama’s repeated public asserti...
Officials say suspects’ plan included attack in Times Square
NEW YORK (AP) — The Boston Marathon bombers were headed for New York’s Times Square to blow up the rest of their explosives, authorities said Thursday, in what they portrayed as a chilling, spur-of-the-moment scheme that fell apart when the brothers realized the car they had hijacked was low on gas.
“New York City was next on their list of targets,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Dzhokhar Tsarnaev...
Building collapse kills at least 87
SAVAR, Bangladesh (AP) — Rescuers tried to free dozens of people believed trapped in the concrete rubble after an eight-story building that housed garment factories collapsed, killing at least 87. Workers had complained about cracks in the structure before it came tumbling down, but were assured it was safe.
Searchers cut holes in the jumbled mess of concrete with drills or their bare hands, passing water and flashlights to those pinned inside...
Feud looms over ricin letter probe
OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — The investigation into poisoned letters mailed to President Barack Obama and others has shifted from an Elvis impersonator to his longtime foe, and authorities must now figure out if an online feud between the two men might have escalated into something more sinister.
Paul Kevin Curtis, 45, was released from a north Mississippi jail on Tuesday and charges against him were dropped, nearly a week after authorities charged h...
Court sets hearing in Chanute death
CHANUTE (AP) — A court hearing is scheduled to decide if there is enough evidence to try a 21-year-old woman charged in the death of a Southeast Kansas woman whose charred remains were found in a burned home in southeast Kansas.
Michelle Voorhees is charged with first-degree murder and aggravated burglary in the January death of 36-year-old Cristy Wiles, whose body was discovered Feb. 6 among the ruins of a Chanute home. Voorhees was arrested ...
As Boston buries its dead, evidence mounts
BOSTON (AP) — The Boston area held funerals for two more of its dead Tuesday — including an 8-year-old boy — as evidence mounted that the older Tsarnaev brother had embraced a radical, anti-American strain of Islam and was the driving force behind the Boston Marathon bombing.
Younger brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s condition was upgraded from serious to fair as investigators continued building their case against the 19-year-old college student. He...
Judge rules ‘In Cold Blood’ materials can’t be disclosed
TOPEKA (AP) — A judge ruled Tuesday that investigation materials from the 1959 “In Cold Blood” murders kept by a Kansas Bureau of Investigation agent at home may not be auctioned off or publicly disclosed until he’s had a chance to review them.
Shawnee County District Judge Larry Hendricks said the state could face “irreparable harm” if the materials found in Harold Nye’s home became public.
The materials include Nye’s personal journals, which...
Law strengthens efforts to fight human trafficking
TOPEKA (AP) — Gov. Sam Brownback signed a new law Monday designed to strengthen efforts in Kansas to combat human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation of young women.
The governor was joined by Attorney General Derek Schmidt and other victim advocates during the event, saying the new provisions will provide increased criminal penalties and services for victims of sexual exploitation. The law takes effect July 1.
“This will not only s...
KU Medical Center to create stem cell center
TOPEKA (AP) — Gov. Sam Brownback signed legislation Monday aimed at making Kansas the national leader in treatments using adult stem cells and umbilical cord blood by requiring the state’s medical school to establish a new research center.
The new Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center to be set up at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City is the brainchild of anti-abortion legislators and has the strong backing of other abortion opp...
Search of suspect’s home finds no ricin
OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Investigators haven’t found any ricin in the house of a Mississippi man accused of mailing poisoned letters to President Barack Obama, a U.S. senator and a local judge, according to testimony Monday from an FBI agent.
Agent Brandon Grant said that a search of Paul Kevin Curtis’ vehicle and house in Corinth, Miss., on Friday did not turn up ricin, ingredients for the poison, or devices used to make it. A search of Curtis’ c...
Panel opens hearing on immigration bill
WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic supporters of a new immigration bill accused opponents Monday of trying to “exploit” the Boston Marathon bombings to hold up the legislation, sparking a testy exchange at a Senate hearing.
“I never said that! I never said that!” Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, interjected as Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., a lead author of the bill, criticized “those who are pointing to what happened, the terrible tragedy in Boston, as a,...
Court sets trial for fugitive in car chase
TECUMSEH, Neb. (AP) — A July trial has been scheduled for a Kansas man accused of firing at officers during a high-speed chase in southeast Nebraska following a crime spree.
Michael Engstrom, 33, of Topeka, Kan., pleaded not guilty this week to attempted murder and several other felony counts in Nebraska’s Johnson County District Court, according to the Beatrice Daily Sun. The trial is scheduled to begin July 8.
Similar charges connected to th...
Farmers protest wind energy company’s project
HUTCHINSON (AP) — The first high voltage electric transmission line to dissect their crop and pasture land arrived in 1967, when Sunflower Electric paid Edwards County farmer Anthony J. Brake $1,413 for the privilege.
The second line — taller and with higher voltage — went up just two years ago, running parallel a few hundred feet from the first.
This time ITC Great Plains used eminent domain when many in the area, including Brake’s daughter a...
Libertarian Party official fights for open-carry laws
TOPEKA (AP) — Topeka resident Earl McIntosh believes Kansas residents have the right to carry firearms openly, and he is willing to take on Kansas cities in court to fight for that right.
McIntosh, who served 21 years in the Marine Corps, is the Second Amendment chairman for the Kansas Libertarian Party. He also is party to a lawsuit against Prairie Village, a Johnson County suburb that enacted a local ordinance banning open carry.