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September 30, 2015: Today in Kansas Report

andy lambertSeptember 30, 2015
Wichita police arrest a 58-year-old man for allegedly abducting a 15-year-old boy, hooking jumper cables up to his ears and shocking him repeatedly in hopes of getting information about a stolen wallet. That man apparently believed the teenager knew who stole it. He eventually let the boy go and the teenager went to the hospital. The man faces charges of aggravated battery and kidnapping.

A judge in Nebraska says farmers can pursue a lawsuit that claims that state improperly deprived them of irrigation water from the Republican River, instead, sending it to Kansas. The water went across the state line two years ago to meet the demands of the Republican River Compact. The farmers in Nebraska don’t dispute that the state had the authority to send the water, but they argue they should’ve been paid for the crop losses that followed.

A federal appeals court opts not to reconsider its ruling requiring an abortion rights opponent to stand trial for sending a letter to a doctor in Wichita saying someone might put a bomb under the doctor’s car. A three-judge panel ruled in July that a jury should decide whether the letter was a “true threat.”
One of the committees in the state legislature considers what might happen if a law were passed barring family members of school workers from serving on school boards. The Kansas Legislative Research Department sent out a survey to school board members throughout the state, asking about that. A bill introduced but tabled last session would have established restrictions like that.
Kansas may have to start looking outside its borders for attorneys to take the cases of indigent defendants. Kansas doesn’t have enough qualified lawyers in some counties willing to take the state’s $62 per hour rate. The head of the Kansas Board of Indigents’ Defense Services says the problem is especially bad in some of the state’s least populated counties.

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