WRITER: Mackenzie Clark

Ex-employee files lawsuit against Willow Domestic Violence Center in federal court

A former employee of the Willow Domestic Violence Center has filed a lawsuit in federal court, alleging that the nonprofit failed to pay her and others overtime wages, retaliated against her and wrongfully fired her. According to the complaint filed Oct. 11 in the U.S. District Court of Kansas in Kansas City, Kan., Maggie Reynolds was a program coordinator at The Willow’s Ottawa facility until she was fired ...

Baldwin City man sought weekly tryst with sex worker at $500 a visit, court documents allege

A Baldwin City man was willing to pay $2,000 per month for weekly meetings with a woman he believed to be a sex worker, according to allegations filed against him in court. James Ryan Reynolds, 43, was arrested at 12:30 p.m. Sept. 11 and charged Sept. 25 with promoting the sale of sexual relations, the Journal-World has reported. On his former Freestate Realty LLC bio page, which has disappeared in the time ...

Defendant in Islamic Center of Lawrence burglary convicted after entering no contest plea

A man suspected of stealing between $1,000 and $2,000 in cash from the Islamic Center of Lawrence entered a plea of no contest and was convicted Thursday in Douglas County District Court. Amadou O. Bah, 32, was found guilty of one count of burglary of a nondwelling, a felony. As part of the plea, the prosecutor dropped a low level-severity felony theft charge and a misdemeanor charge of criminal damage to ...

Lawrence man found guilty of sex crime against teen after pleading no contest

A Lawrence man has been convicted of repeated sex crimes beginning when a girl was 12 up until the time she was 15. Frank J. Martinez, 36, was initially charged with three counts of aggravated indecent liberties with a child, all offgrid-level felonies, and two counts of indecent liberties with a child, both lower-level felonies. On Thursday, he pleaded no contest to one count of aggravated indecent ...

Man sentenced to 11 years in Lawrence kidnapping, sex crime case

A judge on Wednesday sentenced a Lawrence man to 136 months, or 11 years and four months, for kidnapping and aggravated sexual battery. BJ Lauri, 45, initially faced more severe charges, including aggravated criminal sodomy, aggravated human trafficking, aggravated assault, criminal threat, kidnapping and robbery, the Journal-World has reported. He later pleaded no contest to the two lesser charges, and he ...

Lawrence man convicted of attempted murder, aggravated burglary in connection with police standoff

A Lawrence man who allegedly fired his gun at a police officer during a standoff pleaded no contest Wednesday and was convicted of attempted murder in the first degree and aggravated burglary. Abdul Jalil K. Hussein, 36, was charged in connection with multiple incidents: allegedly firing a gun into the air outside his home, which led to an hourslong standoff with police in December 2017; allegedly kicking in ...

Former KU track star and Olympian Diamond Dixon arrested in Lawrence

Updated at 9:15 a.m. Tuesday A former University of Kansas track and field athlete who was part of the U.S. Olympic team for the 2012 games in London was arrested in Lawrence early Tuesday morning. Diamond B. Dixon, 27, was arrested around 1 a.m. in the 1400 block of Massachusetts Street on suspicion of interference with law enforcement and failure to appear, according to the Douglas County Jail booking log. ...

In court, former KU professor alleges policy violations led to her termination

A former tenure track professor at the University of Kansas claimed during a hearing Tuesday that violations of faculty evaluation policy and procedures led to her being terminated. A lawyer for the university, however, argued that her allegations of policy violations were “harmless errors, if that,” and rather that she was terminated because her research progress was insufficient. Catherine Joritz, a ...

Man who allegedly set up series of burglaries in Lawrence convicted

A man who is alleged to have facilitated a series of burglaries in Lawrence was convicted Tuesday in Douglas County District Court. True J. Shipley, 21, pleaded no contest to three counts of robbery, midlevel-severity felonies, Cheryl Wright Kunard, assistant to the Douglas County district attorney, told the Journal-World via email. At the time of his arrest, Shipley had been living in Georgia for a brief ...

Gardner man falsely reported truck stolen in attempt to avoid DWI charge, affidavit alleges

When a Gardner man reported to a Douglas County Sheriff’s Office deputy that his truck had been stolen, parts of the story didn’t add up, according to court documents. The deputy later concluded that the man had falsely reported the truck stolen in an attempt to avoid drunken driving charges, he wrote. Briley J. Bulva, 23, appeared on a summons and was charged June 27 in Douglas County District Court with ...

Suspect in Islamic Center of Lawrence burglary was arrested with nearly $1,200 cash, affidavit alleges

Members of the Islamic Center of Lawrence had just visited in droves to celebrate Eid al-Adha the weekend prior to a burglary on Aug. 13, according to court documents. So a leader of the center told police he thought that between $1,000 and $2,000 worth of cash donations had likely been stolen. The suspect had reportedly taken two whole lockboxes and removed the padlock from a third to steal the cash ...

Lawrence man allegedly threatened motorist with gun, then holed up in apartment with woman

After pointing a revolver at a driver on a major Lawrence street, court documents allege, a man and a woman holed up inside an apartment, telling police, “We ain’t coming out.” Chandler Allen Grey, 27, and Domonique Calvian Edwards, 22, of Lawrence, were arrested late the evening of Aug. 20. Both were later charged with two felonies, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and interference with law ...

Lawrence man arrested, charged after allegedly trying to stab neighbor with butter knife

Story updated at 5:46 p.m. Oct. 9, 2019: A 30-year-old Lawrence man reportedly attempted to stab his neighbor with a butter knife, according to police. Officers responded to the 2500 block of West Sixth Street around 12:43 a.m. Wednesday for a disturbance with weapons call, Sgt. Amy Rhoads, public affairs officer for the Lawrence Police Department, told the Journal-World via email. After the man allegedly ...

Lawrence man sentenced to 5 years, 8 months after pleading down from attempted murder charge

A Lawrence man who had faced a charge of attempted second-degree murder was sentenced Wednesday to 68 months — five years and eight months — in prison, after pleading no contest to lesser charges. Alfred Dewayne Sanders, 47, pleaded no contest on Sept. 4 to six felonies: three counts of aggravated assault and one count each of criminal discharge of a firearm, possession of methamphetamine and theft. The ...

Lawrence man charged with arson in incident involving downtown barricades

A 52-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of arson Tuesday morning after first responders were called to smoldering barricades in downtown Lawrence. Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical responded to the call at 1047 Massachusetts St. at 4:47 a.m. Tuesday, Division Chief of Administration Tom Fagan said in an email to the Journal-World. The address belongs to the Watkins Museum of History. The man was ...

Charles R. Tingler Jr., pictured in September 2019

Lawrence man bound over for trial on child sexual exploitation charges

A Lawrence man who is charged with a child sex crime was bound over for trial Tuesday in Douglas County District Court. Charles Ray Tingler Jr., 46, was charged Sept. 17 with two counts of sexual exploitation of a child, a mid-level felony, in connection with allegations stemming from June 2016. He is alleged to have possessed images that portrayed a child under 18 “shown or heard engaging in sexually ...

Man hid in woman’s Lawrence home and attacked her when she found him, affidavit alleges

A man reportedly sneaked into a woman’s house and hid in the basement for hours, and when she discovered him there, he attacked her, according to court documents. Raju Tamang, 30, of Lawrence, was arrested at 11:05 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13, at a home in west Lawrence. He was charged the following Monday with attempted first-degree murder and attempted rape, both high-severity felonies. The Journal-World ...

In Lawrence murder trial deliberations, majority of jurors flipped votes from not guilty to guilty; new trial scheduled

Twelve jurors never reached a vote closer to unanimous than 10-2 in the murder trial of Rontarus Washington Jr., but over the course of roughly 20 hours of deliberations, the majority gradually flipped from voting not guilty to guilty of murder, one of the jurors said on Sunday. They announced Friday that they were hung on all counts. At a status conference Monday, the judge set aside time for a new four-week ...

Jury unable to reach verdict in 2014 Lawrence murder case; prosecutor wants to try again

Story updated at 5:15 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4: After nearly three full days of deliberation, a jury on Friday was unable to reach a verdict in the murder trial of Rontarus Washington Jr., who was charged in connection with the 2014 death of a young woman who lived in his apartment building. Douglas County District Court Judge James McCabria declared a mistrial after the jury announced its inability to decide, and ...

KU football player granted diversion for charges involving teens at bar; court seals affidavit

A University of Kansas linebacker charged after his arrest with two teen girls at a popular Lawrence bar has been granted a diversion agreement through the Douglas County district attorney’s office, court records show. Thomas P. Barrett, 21, was arrested around 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 31, at the Jayhawk Cafe, commonly known as the Hawk, 1340 Ohio St. He was 20 at the time of his arrest. Two 17-year-old ...