WRITER: Mackenzie Clark

Perry woman seriously injured in car accident, Kansas Highway Patrol reports

A 73-year-old woman suffered suspected serious injuries as a result of a car accident Thursday evening, according to a Kansas Highway Patrol report. Patricia M. Alexander, of Perry, was reportedly eastbound on U.S. Highway 24 in her Chevrolet Impala at 6:23 p.m. Thursday. She made a left turn at Thompsonville Road and her car was reportedly stuck by a Chevrolet Silverado. Alexander was taken to Stormont Vail ...

Kansas governor appoints public defender Stacey Donovan as Douglas County judge

Gov. Laura Kelly has appointed Stacey Donovan, currently the chief public defender in Shawnee County, to fill the vacant judgeship in Douglas County District Court. Donovan, of Lawrence, will fill the position that former Chief Judge Peggy Carr Kittel vacated with her Dec. 31 retirement, according to a Friday news release from the governor’s office. Donovan graduated from the University of Kansas School of ...

Undersheriff files to run for Douglas County sheriff in 2020 election

The man who is currently second in command to the Douglas County sheriff filed Friday to run for the office, also ensuring a Democratic primary in the race. Gary Bunting, 44, has worked for the sheriff’s office since he and his wife, Theresa, moved to Lawrence in 1996, according to information he provided to the Journal-World on Friday. He began as a corrections officer and rose through the ranks of deputy, ...

Fewer folks on the roads meant fewer accidents Friday, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office says

Despite a layer of ice covering most of Douglas County, area law enforcement handled just six car accidents and slide-offs Friday. Deputy Charlie Cooper of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office said via email Friday that the department worked one single-vehicle injury accident on U.S. Highway 59 at Baldwin Junction. That accident was due to the vehicle sliding off the roadway and striking a sign, Cooper said; ...

Teen girls allegedly steal van, flee Lawrence police before arrest

Two girls, ages 13 and 14, were arrested Wednesday night after allegedly stealing a van. Lawrence police officers responded to a residence in the 1600 block of Lindenwood Lane around 8:52 p.m. Wednesday for a report of two juveniles stealing a white transit van, Sgt. Amy Rhoads, public affairs officer for the Lawrence Police Department, said via email Thursday. An officer saw the van near 23rd and Harper ...

Man who was arrested in wake of Lawrence protest now charged with Overland Park murder

An Overland Park man has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with the death of his sister. Parker John Mays, 27, had been the sole arrest following a "Defend the Flag" protest in Lawrence in February 2018. Then 25, he was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage to property. Lawrence Police Capt. Troy Squire told the Journal-World at the time that Mays kicked a truck, climbed on top of it, fell ...

Ex-KU football coach Beaty to subpoena ESPN for ‘Miles to Go’ footage, contracts

As former University of Kansas football coach David Beaty’s legal pursuit of his $3 million buyout continues, his attorneys are now seeking raw footage from a TV series starring his replacement. Beaty, through counsel Brent Coverdale of Kansas City, Mo., on Monday filed a notice of intent to issue subpoenas, accompanied by the lists of what he’s asking video production companies to provide. The subpoenas ...

Student arrested at Lawrence High School, accused of battery on law enforcement

A student was arrested Tuesday morning at Lawrence High School on suspicion of battery on a law enforcement officer, police say. Just before 9 a.m., school resource officers responded to a disturbance reported by school staff, Lawrence Police Department spokesman Patrick Compton said via email Tuesday. “A male student had gotten into an argument with another student, and removed an oversized thumbtack from ...

Judge denies teen’s motion to suppress statements to Lawrence police in Holcom Park shooting case

An Overland Park-based defense attorney argued on his client’s behalf that statements the teen had made to police should not be used against him in court. The contents of those statements were not revealed at a hearing Tuesday, but they may be at trial, based on the judge’s ruling. Benson J. Edwards Jr. is one of two defendants in a Lawrence double shooting case stemming from a March 29, 2019, incident. ...

Lawrence man pleads no contest to 17 counts, is convicted in string of burglaries

A Lawrence man was convicted Monday in a string of home burglaries, auto burglaries and auto thefts reported between Nov. 20 and Nov. 25. Dandre M. Cordray, 19, pleaded no contest and was convicted in Douglas County District Court of 14 felonies: five counts of aggravated burglary, five counts of theft and four counts of burglary of a motor vehicle, plus three counts of misdemeanor theft. Prosecutors had ...

Man sentenced to probation after threatening driver, kids on K-10

A judge on Monday sentenced a Johnson County man to 24 months of probation for reportedly pointing a gun at a fellow driver on Kansas Highway 10 and asking him if he wanted to die. Seth A. Kenney, 20, of Gardner, was initially charged with four felonies: three counts of aggravated assault and one count of fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer. He entered a guilty plea Nov. 22 to one count of ...

Lawrence woman charged with battery against 4-month-old; reportedly told police she’d been too intoxicated to babysit

A Lawrence woman reportedly told police she regretted agreeing to babysit because she knew she was too intoxicated, and she didn’t remember what had happened to injure the infant in her care. Medical records for the boy, 4 months old at the time, indicate that asphyxia could have caused his injuries, according to court documents. Shannon M. Crank, 33, was charged Nov. 20 with two low-level felonies, ...

Candle caused Lawrence apartment fire that affected 12 units

Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical investigators have determined that a candle caused a fire that displaced 11 residents of Village 1 Apartments. Tom Fagan, LDCFM division chief of administration, told the Journal-World via email Thursday that an unattended open-flame candle started the fire, which caused an estimated $450,000 in property damage. “Always be present when using open-flame candles, never ...

Former KU football player convicted of aggravated battery after choking woman in anger over video game

A former linebacker for the University of Kansas pleaded no contest Friday and was convicted of aggravated battery. Kenny Evel Bastida, 20, had previously pleaded not guilty to two felonies, aggravated battery and aggravated assault, and two misdemeanors, criminal damage to property and possession of marijuana. The three latter counts were dismissed as part of the plea agreement, according to Douglas County ...

Lawrence High School student charged after allegedly bringing gun to school

A teen boy who attends Lawrence High School was charged Friday in Douglas County District Court after district administrators reportedly found a gun in his possession earlier this week. The charging document alleges that the 14-year-old stole a Glock 19, a 9 mm handgun, from his parent on Dec. 25. The boy is charged with low-level felony theft and a misdemeanor, criminal use of weapons, for allegedly ...

Judge sends ballroom dance instructor, charged in 3 burglaries at Lawrence cigar shop, back to jail

Story updated at 8:50 a.m. Friday: After ordering him to stop talking at risk of incriminating himself, a judge sent a ballroom dance instructor back to the Douglas County Jail following his court appearance on Thursday. Phillip M. Carney, 37, was arrested in the early-morning hours of Thursday, Jan. 2, and Saturday, Jan. 4, in connection with alleged burglaries of Cigar House Lawrence, the Journal-World has ...

Lawrence man wants to plead guilty to 17 charges, including burglaries, auto thefts

A Lawrence man has rejected a plea deal that prosecutors offered; instead, he wants to plead guilty to the 17 charges leveled against him. Dandre M. Cordray, 19, of Lawrence, faces 14 felonies: five counts of aggravated burglary, five counts of theft and four counts of burglary of a motor vehicle. He is also charged with three counts of misdemeanor theft. He appeared in court Thursday with his appointed ...

Fourth suspect in Lawrence ‘Purge’ mask robberies sentenced to probation

The last of four suspects charged in connection with a series of armed robberies around Lawrence in early 2018 was sentenced Tuesday to probation. Justice L. Dent, 21, had pleaded no contest to two counts of robbery on Dec. 3. A judge sentenced him to 36 months of probation during which he must submit to random substance abuse testing and have no contact with his co-defendants, Dorothy Kliem, trial assistant ...

FYI, you can get a free gun lock from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office

What’s better than free stuff? Free stuff with the power to save lives. Through a partnership with a national nonprofit, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office offers free gun locks to anyone who wants to stop by and pick one up. This partnership has been in place since 2007, Jenn Hethcoat, public information officer for the sheriff’s office, told me via email Monday. However, since I didn’t know about ...

Student brought loaded gun to Lawrence High School, district says

Story updated at 5:13 p.m. Wednesday: A student brought a firearm to Lawrence High School on Wednesday, according to a news release from the school district. LHS administrators worked with Lawrence police to investigate a student’s report that another student may have brought a weapon to school, according to the release from district spokeswoman Julie Boyle. “Staff and police confiscated a loaded ...