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Archive for Saturday, July 24, 2004

Area briefs

July 24, 2004

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Lawrence resident wins $100,000 in Powerball

A $1 chance paid off this week when a Lawrence resident cashed in with Powerball.

Larry Johnson, a manager at Cork & Barrel, 901 Miss., matched five numbers in the Wednesday lottery drawing and won $100,000. Next to the jackpot, $100,000 is the second-largest prize offered in the Powerball game.

He didn't expect much when he bought the ticket because he buys only a handful every year, he said.

Johnson and his wife, Peggy, a financial adviser for American Express, plan to invest the winnings.

The ticket came from Dillons, 4701 W. Sixth St. The store will receive a $1,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket.

No one claimed the jackpot Wednesday, which had risen to $36 million by Friday.

The next set of numbers will be drawn at 9:59 p.m. today.

Last defendant reaches plea in rape of teen

The last of four defendants charged with raping an intoxicated 13-year-old girl last summer reached a plea agreement Friday.

Michael Rayton, 28, Lawrence, pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. He initially was charged with rape, but the victim's mother didn't oppose a plea agreement because she said she didn't want her daughter to have to testify again.

Under Kansas law, sex with someone under 14 is classified as rape, regardless of other circumstances.

Douglas County District Judge Paula Martin sparked a controversy earlier this year when she gave probation and shock time in jail to two co-defendants who were convicted of rape at trial. Martin found that the girl was an "active participant" and wasn't harmed as much as some rape victims.

Another co-defendant received a 30-month sentence in a juvenile-correction facility.

Rayton is scheduled to be sentenced Sept. 3.

Inmate reaches plea in jail hostage case

A man charged with taking a nurse hostage at the Douglas County Jail has reached a plea agreement that reduces the severity of the main charge against him.

Joshua J. Bourell, 23, Hutchinson, was convicted Thursday of kidnapping, attempted aggravated escape from custody, felony battery on a law-enforcement officer, and misdemeanor battery on a law-enforcement officer. The kidnapping charge was reduced from aggravated kidnapping as part of the plea.

Bourell has a history of bipolar disorder, according to court records. A sentencing date has not been set, pending the outcome of a mental-health evaluation.

Kidnapping carries a normal penalty of 55 to 247 months in prison, depending on the person's criminal background.

The incident happened Oct. 23, 2003, while a nurse from the Douglas County Visiting Nurses Assn. was making the rounds at the jail dispensing medication. Bourell had been arrested a week earlier after allegedly causing a disturbance at Captain Ribman's Meat Market, 811 N.H.

Topekans arrested for car burglaries

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office has arrested two Topeka men in connection with a string of auto burglaries at Perry Lake.

Officers received a report of a suspicious vehicle and arrested the men Wednesday afternoon after a traffic stop, said Capt. Tim Byers, a spokesman for the Sheriff's o Office. The suspects, ages 37 and 21, were booked into the county jail on suspicion of 11 counts of auto burglary, 11 counts of theft, and 10 counts of criminal damage.

The lake area has been plagued with auto burglaries the past two weeks, Byers said.

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