Authorities suspect a separate vehicle crash may have damaged railroad tracks before the Amtrak derailment near Cimarron. Investigators are examining tire tracks leading to the train tracks and preserving the scene with crime scene tape. A government official claims an engineer on the train hit the brakes after spotting a bend in the rail. Roughly 30 people were taken to the hospital, but most have been released.
Wichita police investigate a report that two college students were attacked by a man shouting racial epithets and the name of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. One of the students is a Muslim who is student body vice president at Wichita State and claims he was pushed and his Hispanic friend, punched and kicked. Police are trying to get surveillance video from a convenience store.
A state lawmaker introduces a bill that would roll back a tax exemption for business owners in order to cut the state sales tax on groceries. That proposal has a hearing today before the House Taxation Committee. The Department of Revenue believs the bill would raise about $261 million, which would let the state lower the sales tax on groceries anywhere from 2.6 percent to 2.9 percent.
A new report claims women in Kansas who work full-time earn 79 cents for every dollar made by men. The University of Kansas’ Center for Science and Technology & Economic Policy was commissioned by the Women’s Foundation to analyze factors such as economic well-being, health and civic engagement of women across the state. Johnson County has the highest median earnings for women, while Gove County has the lowest.
Sentencing is set for late April for a man from Bennington convicted of killing a girl and her father in a traffic crash. He was driving under the influence at the time, and a jury convicted him of two felony counts of involuntary manslaughter. That crash happened nearly two years ago just west of Bennington.