State and Region

KBI: State’s fingerprint database is in danger of crashing

Topeka — A database of finger and palm prints used by law enforcement and child welfare workers is in danger of failing and needs to be replaced, a Kansas Bureau of Investigation official told lawmakers. The system contains more than 2 million finger and palm prints and if it stops working ...

Kansas prisons chief abolishes list of 7,000 banned books

Topeka — The new Kansas corrections chief has abolished a list of 7,000 books banned from state prisons and adopted a policy that allows for the review and appeal of confiscated publications. Jeff Zmuda became the acting secretary of the state Department of Corrections last month. His ...

Judge rules immigration law unconstitutional in case involving Lawrence company

Story updated at 2:32 p.m. Thursday KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A federal judge in Kansas has ruled that a law making it a crime to "encourage" or "induce" immigrants to enter or live in the country illegally is unconstitutional. KCUR-FM reports that U.S. District Judge Carlos Murguia issued his ...

Court: Attorney can’t claim immunity in Floyd Bledsoe case

Story updated at 2:33 p.m. Thursday TOPEKA — A federal appeals court has ruled that a former Kansas county prosecutor does not have absolute immunity in lawsuits filed by a man who spent nearly 16 years in prison for a murder his brother later confessed to committing in a suicide note. The ...

Company sees retaliation in Kansas ending literacy grant

TOPEKA — The president of the company that formerly ran a literacy program for Kansas’ public elementary schools alleged Monday that the state canceled the multimillion-dollar grant in “retaliation” for the firm’s opposition to major changes state officials were seeking. The Kansas ...

Survey finds 1,040 Kansans ignored school bus stop signs in 1 day

TOPEKA — Kansas education officials are expressing concern that many motorists are ignoring a state law that requires them to stop when approaching a stopped school bus that is loading or unloading children. A recent survey found 1,040 motorists illegally passed school buses in Kansas during ...

Kansas cancels grant for early literacy program in schools

Story updated at 4:35 p.m. Friday TOPEKA — Kansas has canceled a grant for an early literacy program for public school children after a previously unreleased audit found that the company administering the course received millions of dollars it wasn't entitled to during former Republican Gov. ...

Friday morning earthquake near Hutchinson measured magnitude 4.2

HUTCHINSON — A series of earthquakes shook parts of Kansas on Friday morning near Hutchinson, knocking down ceiling tiles and breaking some windows. The largest earthquake measured 4.2 and struck around 8 a.m., with an epicenter about 3 miles from Hutchinson. The U.S. Geological Survey ...

Republicans still waiting on Pompeo in Kansas Senate race

TOPEKA — Even though U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has declared a Senate run to be "off the table" next year, many fellow Republicans in Washington and his home state of Kansas aren't buying it. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is among the GOP senators encouraging the former ...

Armed man arrested at Missouri Walmart says he was ‘foolish’ but has no regrets

Springfield, Mo. — A man who walked into a Missouri Walmart wearing body armor and carrying loaded weapons acknowledges the timing was bad but said he didn’t intend to hurt anyone and doesn’t regret his actions. Dmitriy Andreychenko, 20, is charged with making a terrorist threat after ...

Mother of man killed at Lawrence motel found dead; estranged husband said he killed her before shootout near Legends

A missing woman was found dead in Arkansas hours after police fatally shot her estranged, rifle-toting husband near a popular shopping area in Kansas City, Kansas, authorities said Wednesday. The body of 49-year-old Sylvia Ussery-Pearson was found Tuesday night in northwestern Arkansas' Benton ...

Ruling holds U.S. attorney’s office in Kansas in contempt

Story updated at 11:52 a.m. Thursday WICHITA — Prosecutors in the U.S. attorney's office in Kansas City, Kansas, improperly listened to recorded communications between inmates and their defense attorneys and willfully violated court orders during an independent investigation of the systemic ...

KCK police fatally shoot rifle-toting man near Legends shopping area

Story updated at 3:59 p.m. Tuesday KANSAS CITY, KAN. — Kansas City, Kansas, police shot and killed a man on Tuesday who told a hotel manager that he had killed his wife and was heading to a popular shopping and restaurant area. The "very angry and distraught" man entered the Country Inn ...

State of Kansas pays Planned Parenthood’s legal bills over Medicaid

WICHITA — A court filing shows Kansas’ failed effort to strip Medicaid money from Planned Parenthood will cost the state more than $464,300 in attorney fees, expenses and other costs. A stipulation filed Monday in federal court in Kansas comes after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected last ...

Armed man arrested at Missouri Walmart

Springfield, Mo. — Prosecutors on Friday filed a terrorist threat charge against a 20-year-old man who said he walked into a Missouri store wearing body armor and carrying a loaded rifle and handgun to test whether Walmart would honor his constitutional right to bear arms. The incident, just ...

Kansas to move up to 360 inmates to Arizona prison to ease overcrowding

Story updated 4:40 p.m. Friday, Aug. 9, 2019: TOPEKA — Kansas plans to ease crowding in its prison system by moving scores of inmates to a private prison in Arizona over the next four months, an arrangement that made some top state lawmakers uneasy before the contract with a giant ...

Pompeo to give Landon Lecture at K-State

Manhattan — U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will give a Landon Lecture at Kansas State University next month. Pompeo will speak Sept. 6 at McCain Auditorium. He has been secretary of state since March 2018. Before that, he served a brief time as President Donald Trump’s director of the ...

Kansas says insurance company Aetna risks losing $1B Medicaid contract

TOPEKA — The Kansas health department says insurance company Aetna is at risk of losing its $1-billion-a-year contract with the state's Medicaid program. The Kansas City Star reports the agency gave Aetna 10 days to get its act together. A Kansas City Star request for comment to Aetna was ...

GOP commentator running for Roberts’ Senate seat in Kansas

TOPEKA — A conservative commentator says he is joining the race of the U.S. Senate in Kansas. Bryan Pruitt said Monday he will return to the state from Washington D.C. for what he acknowledged is a "long shot" bid for the Senate seat held by retiring Sen. Pat Roberts. Pruitt, who is a ...

Meier-Hummel appointed as Kansas youth suicide prevention coordinator

TOPEKA — The Kansas attorney general has appointed the state's first Kansas Youth Suicide Prevention Coordinator. Attorney General Derek Schmidt on Tuesday appointed Gina Meier-Hummel to the job, which was created after recommendations from a task force. Meier-Hummel was secretary of the ...