Disaster declaration issued by Governor…and other headlines from the Today in Kansas Report: October 11, 2018

Jackson SchneiderOctober 11, 2018

Governor Jeff Colyer is issuing a disaster declaration following heavy rains and flooding around the state.  The declaration allows state resources to be used in any county impacted by floodwaters.  State officials say additional counties will be included in the declaration if they ask for help

Vice President Mike Pence will visit Kansas.  Pence is scheduled to attend an October 18th campaign event in Wichita for Republican candidate for governor Kris Kobach.  Details about the vice president’s visit have not been revealed.  The vice president is also expected to visit Topeka on October 19th to campaign for Second Congressional District Republican candidate Steve Watkins.

A Kansas Republican official is resigning after he posted a racist message about Third District Democratic congressional candidate Sharice Davids.  The Johnson County Republican Party says Michael Kalny of Shawnee resigned from his post as a precinct committeeman yesterday.  Kalny’s resignation comes after he sent a Facebook message to the president of the Johnson County Democratic Women’s north chapter on Monday that described Davids as a radical socialist kick boxing lesbian Indian who would be sent packing back to the reservation.  Davids would become the first openly gay member of the Kansas congressional delegation if she is elected next month.

A former Leavenworth federal prison inmate was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for attacking a Leavenworth prison guard with a pair of scissors. The defendant also was ordered to pay $18,692 in restitution. 27-year-old Richard A. James, Jr. pleaded guilty to one count of assaulting a federal officer. In his plea, he admitted he attacked Joseph Brian Wilson, a unit manager for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. James admitted he sharpened the ends of a pair of grooming scissors and stabbed Wilson. Corrections officers had to pull James off Wilson to stop the attack. James later told investigators he wanted a “change of scenery” and hoped he would be moved to another prison because of the attack.

A Hutchinson man was sentenced to 60 days in federal prison for stealing $145,000 from a company where he worked. In addition, the defendant was ordered to pay full restitution.  65-year-old Richard H. Yust pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. In his plea, he admitted the crime occurred while he was working as controller for F&H Insulation Sales and Service, Inc., in Kechi, Kan. He used company credit cards to make unauthorized purchases of items for his personal use. After serving the sentence, Yust will be on supervised release for three years.

A Coffeyville woman was sentenced to 60 days in federal prison for stealing $150,000 from a customer at a bank where she worked. In addition, she was ordered to pay full restitution. 61-year-old Phyllis Lanning pleaded guilty to one count of mail fraud. She admitted that while she worked for Condon National Bank in Coffeyville she created and mailed falsified documents in order to conceal the fact she stole $150,000 from a customer’s account. She diverted legitimate monthly statements to a postal address in Bartlesville, Okla., that she controlled. She prepared counterfeit statements and mailed them to the owner of the account. The theft was discovered after the owner of the account died and family members took control of the account.  After she serves the sentence, she will serve three years supervised released.

The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas has announced that it will honor former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker with the 2018 Dole Leadership Prize. Baker will accept the award at a public program at the institute on November 7th. His career in public service began in 1975 as undersecretary of commerce to President Gerald Ford. He would go on to serve through January 1993, culminating in his appointment as secretary of state. He served under presidents Ford, Reagan, and Bush.

Kansas State University is mourning the death of a former men’s basketball coach.  Fred ‘Tex’ Winter passed away yesterday in Manhattan at the age of 96.  Winter won 261 games as the head coach at K-State from 1954 to 1968, and he led the Wildcats to two Final Four appearances.  Winter also served as an assistant coach with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers and was a part of 11 NBA championship teams.




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