Elderly woman killed in Sheridan County crash…mountain lion found dead in Rooks County…and other headlines from the Today in Kansas Report: February 1, 2019

Sacha SanguinettiFebruary 1, 2019

An 84-year-old woman from Scott City was killed in crash in NW Kansas. According to the KHP, a semi hauling an oversized load was headed south on K-23 Highway. It had moved over so it could clear a bridge. An oncoming car struck the load of the semi head on. The crash happened in Sheridany county, 4 miles south of Hoxie.

Kansas Game Wardens say a female mountain lion was found dead in Rooks County on Thursday. The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism posted a photo of the dead animal to its Facebook page. The agency said a group of upland bird hunters found the mountain lion. The group immediately contacted the local game warden who responded to the scene. One person from the group posted on social media the big cat appeared to have been shot multiple times with a shotgun. One of the cat’s paws was then sawed off . The incident is under investigation.

A house fire in the Riley County community of Ogden killed four people, and left several firefighters hurt. Four people were found dead inside the structure, a former business which was renovated into living space. Several firefighters suffered injuries due to falls. The state fire marshall’s office is investigating.

A proposed state house bill would require background checks on private gun sales.  Authorities say H-B 2111 targets transactions between private individuals at gun shows or via online ads.  If passed, those who fail to comply with the measure would face a Class A misdemeanor. Currently, only federally licensed gun dealers have to run background checks on their customers.

State lawyers are settling with the American Civil Liberties Union for legal fees arising from the battle over Kansas’s proof-of-citizenship voting law.  State officials say the secretary of state’s office will pay twenty thousand dollars to the ACLU after the two sides settled a federal court case.  In June, U.S. Judge Julie Robinson struck down the law, which required people to provide proof of citizenship in order to register to vote.

What do you think of drones buzzing around overhead?  That’s the question being asked by the folks at the Kansas Department of Transportation’s Division of Aviation.  They’re seeking the public’s thoughts on the use of unmanned aerial systems, i.e. “drones,” in Kansas airspace.  The survey can be found on the KDOT website. Here is a link to the survey: https://www.ippkansas.org/ks-uas-ipp-survey

You may question his wisdom, but there’s no doubting the reckless courage of a particularly brazen car thief in Kansas. While officers were conducting  a car stop in the KCK area, while their attention was elsewhere, the suspect hopped into their patrol car and drove off.  The vehicle was later found damaged and abandoned. The suspect was nabbed near a Taco Bell where he was allegedly trying to boost another car.

The groundhog will make his annual appearance on Saturday. The most famous weather predicting rodent is Punxsutawney Phil.  The February 2nd tradition marks the 133rd year that Phil has predicted whether we’ll have an early spring or six more miserable weeks of cold and snow.  If Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow, winter marches on.  If he doesn’t then spring is right around the corner. How reliable is his forecast? Kansas State Climatologist Mary Knapp says it’s less than 40 percent accurate.  The earliest settlers began celebrating Groundhog Day in the 1800s

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