Criminal Justice: High court tosses out 1998 weapons conviction
The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday reversed a weapons conviction against a Franklin County man who was convicted of manslaughter in the same 1998 crime.
Randy Owens accidentally shot and killed his brother, Jeremy, on July 7, 1998, while trying to unjam the bullet cylinder of Jeremy's .38-caliber revolver. Randy Owens was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and criminal possession of a firearm he had a previous felony conviction that made his handling of the gun illegal.
During the trial, however, District Judge James Smith did not instruct jurors they must unanimously determine which of several incidents constituted criminal possession of a firearm. The Kansas Supreme Court reversed the conviction Friday, saying the jurors should have been so instructed. The manslaughter conviction was allowed to stand.
Fund raising: Bird product event raises money for Audubon Society
Birds in Lawrence will be eating a little better in the upcoming weeks, thanks to an event Saturday at the Lawrence Senior Center, 745 Vt.
The Jayhawk Audubon Society had its first fund-raising sale of the season. The society has three or four sales each winter.
Shoppers could purchase everything from bird feeders and the birdseed to put in them to books about birdwatching.
Organizers said sales were brisk, though they were still determining profits. Proceeds go to the organization's events, which include education programs at schools, scholarships and maintenance at the Baker Wetlands.
Above, Eric Hansen, the group's electronic communication community chair, helps load bags of birdseed into cars.
Arts: Show features early music
The Kansas University Collegium Musicum will present "Early Music for the Holiday Season" at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in Bales Organ Recital Hall.
The Collegium Musicum performs music related to the season from the Middle Ages, Renaissance and Baroque periods. Paul Laird and Gary Weidenaar conduct.
The program includes motets from the 16th century by Morales, Palestrina and Victoria; a consort song from the Christmas season by William Byrd; Italian and English instrumental music of the 16th century; a trio from J.S. Bach's "Christmas Oratorio" and his "Wachet auf;" an aria from a cantata by George Frideric Handel; a recorder sonata by Antonio Vivaldi; and English carols of the 15th century.
The free concert is open to the public.
Charity: Gingerbread raises $15,000
The eighth annual Eldridge Hotel Gingerbread Festival & Auction brought in $15,000 for Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Douglas County Wednesday, organizers announced.
Three children received $50 savings bonds for their winning creations. They were Alyssa Denneler, 5-8 year-olds; Hannah Lodwick, 9-12 year-olds; and Shelby Roberts, 13-18 year-olds.
Prizes also were awarded to three adult gingerbread artists. Jeannie Robinson, Helen Benefiel and Allen Blair.