Local News

KSN Investigation Follow-Up: WPD traffic tickets vs. warnings

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 9:58pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Last February, KSN told you about the Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay urging his officers to let drivers off with a warning for minor traffic violations.

Some worried that leniency might lead to more accidents.

Now, one year later, KSN is following up by checking the policy and the numbers.

As of September 22, 2017, written warnings are part of the WPD traffic policy. Officers could always give verbal warnings, but now, warnings can be printed by their e-citation devices and tracked through the system.

Officer A. Weber prints out a traffic citation during a traffic stop. (KSN Photo)

“The warning is a much shorter piece of paper that prints off because it doesn’t have all the instructions like a normal citation,” said Officer A. Weber during a traffic stop.

Giving more warnings, instead of tickets, is part of the police chief’s campaign to build better relationships between citizens, starting with a community cookout in 2016.

“A warning is one way to do that on minor violations,” said Deputy Chief Troy Livingston. “We don’t write them on major violations.”

For example, Officer Weber ticketed a driver going 61 mph in a 40 mph zone. He also issued a citation to a driver who didn’t have proof of insurance and was going 12 mph over the posted speed limit.

Another driver speeding 9 mph over the posted limit was let off with a warning.

“A warning is one way to do that on minor violations,” said Deputy Chief Troy Livingston. “We don’t write them on major violations.”

“Being stopped by police, for most people, is a big deal,” said Officer Weber.

The WPD traffic policy outlines when a warning can and cannot be given, but it’s ultimately up to the officer to decide when a fine or just a friendly reminder is enough.

But does a warning change a driver’s behavior the way a ticket would?

“I think some of the criticism in the beginning was that, ‘Hey, your accidents are going to go up. Your fatalities are going up if you’re giving more warnings,” said Deputy Chief Livingston. “I get that perspective; however, that doesn’t appear to be the case.”

KSN checked the numbers. Wichita had 2,393 injury accidents in 2016, compared to 2,008 last year, a drop of 385 collisions. Fatal accidents also decreased from 27 in 2016 to 26 in 2017.

WEB LINK | Wichita Police Department traffic citations and collisions

Good news, but Livingston admits, it’s not conclusive.

“Twelve months does not a longitudinal study make, but to me, this seems like good, important data.”

As for how many written warnings were issued compared to citations, police didn’t start tracking warnings until September of 2016. For that reason, we can only look at averages.

In that year, WPD issued an average of 233 written warnings per month and 4,049 citations per month. In 2017, warnings increased to an average 287 per month, and citations fell to 3,141 per month.

WPD plans to track these numbers, as the traffic section consolidates into one location with 20 officers and 16 motorcycles by spring.

“What I expect with centralized traffic is that we will be able to hit high accident locations more effectively, more efficiently,” said Deputy Chief Livingston.

Police issued an average of 233 written warnings per month and 4,049 citations per month in 2016. In 2017, warnings increased to an average 287 per month, and citations fell to 3,141 per month.

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Categories: Local News

More community members step up to search for Lucas

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 9:34pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Wichita police say their search of local parks for missing 5-year-old Lucas Hernandez is over, unless new information comes to light.

Officers have combed through Chisholm Creek Park, Dr. Glen Dey Park, Harrison Park and Cottonwood Park over the last 10 days.

WPD officials say officers, K9’s, divers and drones have found no signs of Lucas.

But that’s not stopping some in our community from looking for Lucas on their own.

“If my five-year-old was missing, I would want everybody out looking for him also,” said Sharisse Robinson.

Robinson is one of many people providing whatever help possible to find Lucas.

Tuesday, she and her kids went on their own search trying to gather answers.

“Everybody else is already looking in the parks,” said Robinson. “Everybody’s already looking at the apartment complexes that used to be lived in and all these places. I just want to look outside that box.”

This is one of many searches community members have been organizing, and one of the main platforms has been social media.

One page for missing children that has nearly 60,000 followers on Facebook is helping spread the message.

One woman who lives two hours away is working with another group out of Missouri that works to find missing children.

They are planning to come to Wichita for a search on Sunday.

“Nobody knows what condition we’re going to find him in,” said Theresa Nelson, who is helping organize that search. “So, it’s important for everybody, not just Wichita community. It’s important for all the people. You know, he’s our son.”

Wichita police say they continue to ask for the community’s help in looking for Lucas.

But, they say citizens need to make sure they are at a place they have permission to search.

“Going to private property, even with good intentions, without the permission of some property owner could be a violation of city ordinance,” said Charley Davidson, public information officer for the WPD.

There is another community search planned for Wednesday morning at Cottonwood Park.

Wichita police ask if you do find anything to not touch it and to contact them immediately.

If you have any information that can help in the search, please call the tip line at 316-383-4661.

Categories: Local News

Wichita tech expert warns social media users after hacker scare

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 9:07pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A Wichita woman is sending a warning to social media users after she said someone attempted to hack her Facebook account.

“I was very confused, and I was kind of worried because I don’t know how something like this happens,” said Riley Terreau.

Terreau, 21, was at work when she said she got a notification on her cell phone.

“I randomly received these text messages from an unknown number, so I opened my phone and saw that I had my Facebook password changed. “It said that an unknown computer had accessed my account and changed my password,” she said.

Alarmed by what was happening, Terreau turned to her father and technology expert Bill Ramsey.

“The dad and the geek kind of kicked it in high gear,” Ramsey said.

Ramsey, the former Chief Technology Officer at CybertronIT and CybertronPC, immediately took Terreau’s cell phone and started to investigate.

“What really had happened was somebody from Saudi Arabia was gaining access to her account and we were just staying one step ahead of them by continuing to change the password before they could change her phone number or email address in the system. Had they been able to change her phone number, they would have received the texts and then they could have taken over,” Ramsey explained.

Ramsey was able to stop the person from getting into Terreau’s account by first changing her password to a much more secure and elaborate passphrase and then updating a number of her account’s security settings.

One of those was to choose several trusted contacts on Terreau’s Facebook profile. A trusted contact is notified if a person is ever locked out of their account. The trusted account is able to send a recovery code with a special URL to the profile owner to get back into their account.

“I also set up two factor authentication. Many people think it’s inconvenient, but it’s the number one best thing you can do,” Ramsey said. “You have two options. You can have it send you a text message with a code that you have to use every time you want to log in or you can set it up to use an authenticator app.”

Ramsey said the more secure a person’s account is, the less likely they are to fall victim to an online scam or hacker. However, he adds a cyber attack can happen to anyone.

“I can name probably 20 people in the last month that I know of that have had their accounts hijacked. It happens all the time,” he said. “You are only as safe as the company makes you and as safe as you take the time and go in and make yourself.”

Account Security Tips

  • Use a strong passwords or passphrase
  • Use two-factor authentication
  • Specify your trusted contacts
  • Close the accounts you’re not using.
  • Check your account activity
  • Delete third-party account connections
  • Keep your mobile apps updated
Categories: Local News

Sedgwick County Sheriff on detention deputy shortage: “We’re almost a whole shift down now”

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 7:11pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Sedgwick County Jail currently houses more than 1,100 inmates.

However, the number of deputies who work at the jail is continuing to plummet.

Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter says it’s a slew of reasons why they can’t keep jail deputies staffed at the jail.

He says the starting pay $15.97 an hour.

Easter says the norm over the past year and a half is to be short around 40 deputies, but he says that number has gotten worse.

“We are 58 people short in the jail, basically, being 58 short, we’re almost a whole shift down now, inside the jail,” said Easter.

He says a normal shift consists of 75 detention deputies.

Easter told KSN what he feels is the biggest issue with the staffing shortage.

“Our retention rate, what we are looking at is between that three and five year time frame is when most people are leaving,” said Easter.

Easter says when deputies leave, or call in sick, that puts the burden back on other deputies.

He says some are working 12 to 16 hour shifts, up to six days a week.

Deputy Sabrena Gresham has worked for the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office for 12 years.

She says over time, she has noticed the number of detention deputies, like herself, dwindle.

“I’ve been here for 12 years, and I believe my class had 17 in it, and there are four of us left after 12 years,” said Gresham.

As for recruiting and adding more staff, Gresham would welcome the help.

“To be safe, if something happens, we have plenty of people that are able to come and respond to the pods when it is time for us to handle to take care of a situation,” said Gresham.

The issue of detention deputy staffing at the jail is one Sedgwick County Commissioner Michael O’Donnell says needs to be addressed.

“It doesn’t make sense to overwork these deputies, it also doesn’t make sense to pay for the overtime, when you could those savings and put that into higher starting wages,” said O’Donnell.

As for detention deputy pay, Easter says he is working to put in for raises for the deputies this year.

It is something O’Donnell believes himself and the four other commissioners would consider moving forward with, when they adopt their budget this Summer.

Categories: Local News

Wink Hartman offers arena to NRA to host national convention

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 6:19pm

TOPEKA (KSN CAPITOL BUREAU) An effort is underway to bring the National Rifle Association’s annual convention to Kansas.

In a tweet Tuesday, former gubernatorial candidate Wink Hartman offered Hartman Arena to the NRA to host its national convention saying “We cannot stand by as the liberal anti-second amendment groups mobilize to disarm law-abiding Americans.”

The convention is scheduled to be held in Dallas this May, but the city’s mayor pro-tem has said the organization should reconsider after 17 students were gunned down at a Florida high school two weeks ago.

“I think it’s kind of ridiculous that because of a school shooting some organizations are criticizing the NRA like the NRA caused the shooting,” said Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Over the weekend in a tweet Kobach invited the NRA to hold its convention in the Sunflower state.

“They’re a great organization and they’d bring in a lot of people visiting our state and a lot of commerce to our state, so we welcome them with open arms,” said Kobach.

“I think it is a crass political poly, and I think it’s disrespectful,” said Ethan Corson, the Exec. Dir of the Kansas Democratic Party.

Corson said the NRA would not be welcomed with opened arms.

“I think it’s disrespectful to the families, to the parents, to the children that we lost, and also just tone-deaf of the national conversation that is happening right now around gun control,” Corson explained.

Corson points to a number of corporations cutting ties with the NRA and said Kansas should do the same.

“Delta, American Airlines, Hertz, others that have boycotted the NRA, I think it send the wrong message to businesses in Kansas,” he said.

The KSN Capitol Bureau did reach out to the NRA for comment and to find out if the organization is actually considering moving its convention, but we did not hear back from them.

Categories: Local News

Grateful Heart: Woman says advocating for her heart saved her life

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 4:55pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) –  It’s amazing Donna Brummett even thought she was having a heart attack.

An avid runner with normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels and no history of heart trouble, she says she’s grateful the problem was caught in time.

“I couldn’t lift my arms. I had pain in both my arms. I had pressure in my chest and back. You just have to listen to your body,” said Donna Brummett

“I started feeling nauseous and some pressure in my chest and my back and just immediately thought I was having a heart attack,” explains Donna.

So Donna’s family catered the dinner while Donna’s mom took her to the hospital.

“It was hard to have to convince people to believe me,” remembers Donna.

Donna says the medical staff kept trying to tell her she had the flu, but Donna knew it was more than that.

“I couldn’t lift my arms. I had pain in both my arms. I had pressure in my chest and back. You just have to listen to your body.”

Thankfully, she pressed the issue, and after a check of her troponin levels, Donna was on a helicopter headed for the hospital where doctors told her she 100 percent blockage in her left anterior descending artery.

It’s also known as the widow-maker because its blockage can result in immediate death.

“I could hear them say let’s just try one more time, let’s see if we can do it and I’m thinking what are they talking about? It was really scary,” remembers Donna.

After several tries, Donna’s heart cath was successful and she avoided open heart surgery.

“Everyday, I wake up, ok phew. I’m alive again. At night you think, am I going to be here tomorrow?” says Donna.

RELATED LINK | Warning Signs of a Heart Attack – American Heart Association

Now, Donna says she pays more attention to her diet. She quit her stressful catering job and has learned to stress less.

“It can happen to anyone. I was 48 years old. I ran three miles the day before. I was the picture of health. I felt great. And boom, it just happened.”

Donna says her best advice for anyone who feels their experiencing any health condition is to listen to your body and if doctors don’t believe you, to really push the issue.

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Categories: Local News

Police asking for help to find Manhattan rape suspects

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 4:24pm

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNT) – Riley County police are asking for the public’s help to find two people suspected of raping a woman at a Manhattan bar.

Police said Tuesday a 24-year-old woman was raped Saturday at O’Malley’s bar. Investigators say the woman was in a restroom when the two suspects came in and attacked her.

The department is asking anyone who was at O’Malley’s Saturday night who has pictures or videos from inside the bar to contact authorities.

Information can be offered directly to the police department or through the Crime Stoppers hotline.

Manhattan — we need your help. On Saturday, Feb 17, a 24 year-old woman was raped by two unknown white males at O'Malley's bar.

We are asking for anyone who went to O'Malley's that night&has pictures/videos from inside the bar to please contact RCPD : (785) 537-2112 ext. 2323.

— RCPD (@RileyCountyPD) February 27, 2018

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Categories: Local News

Some high schools crack down on kids vaping on campus

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 4:20pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – To vape or not to vape. Some smokers wrestle with the idea. But some school leaders say vaping is a no-go.

At Kapaun Mt. Carmel, school leaders are very clear that vaping can lead to suspension.

“This is certainly nothing new, and our kids are susceptible to temptations, even though we strive to hold our students to a higher standard,” says Kapaun Principal, Chris Bloomer. “Parents are concerned, and well, I think they are legitimate concerns. I think whenever you have students participating in what we would consider risky behavior, I think that’s a concern for parents. And I think that while vaping might seem new and different from smoking, I think it falls in a lot of the same vein as that and I think that it’s a threat to our student’s health.”

Parent Shonna Jones said her daughter has seen kids vaping at school. And she says she has had the vaping conversation with both of her kids, just as she would talk about smoking.

“Yes, both of them are athletes, and they’re seeing too many of their friends who have been vaping quite a bit, and they are starting to see it in their lungs. So my kids are like, they are not going to risk athletics for that,” says Jones. “I don’t think we know enough about vaping yet, the effects it’s going to have on our kids, long-term. But, I think it’s just as bad as smoking.”

Kapaun parent Carlos Castro says he believes vaping is not as prevalent at Kapaun as some others. But he says he is glad to see Kapaun Mt. Carmel taking an active role in stopping vaping just as they have done for years with smoking.

“I think they both are a danger, I guess,” says Castro on smoking and vaping. “I think they are equal. I mean, they are not good.”

Principal Bloomer says other schools have wrestled with vaping on campus and says his campus has not been an island.

“I think that our mission statement is perfect for our school, and we are dedicated to our kids,” says Bloomer. “Are our kids susceptible to these temptations? Sure. But, we are dedicated to the education of the to total person. We strive to overcome and create the best person possible in the image of Jesus Christ.”

And while the school holds to a strict moral code, they hold to a strict tobacco-free code as well. That includes Ecig, vaporizers and small devices that contain nicotine.

“On vaping devices, well, we are going to see it just as if they were using tobacco products, if they were smoking. It would be no different if they were smoking in the bathroom or smoking on campus or even in their car. That would be a violation of our tobacco-free campus,” says Bloomer. “If students are caught, yes, we would consider that a violation of our tobacco policy, and they would be suspended. And we would follow the natural steps that we would follow to any of those substances.”

Vape shop owners point out that vaping has been good for helping some to stop smoking. But, they say, they still ID anyone wanting to buy vape materials.

“A lot of elderly people come in and say, hey I’ve been smoking for 20-30 years. And they want to try this for about a week or so,” says Karl Tran, assistant manager at Lucky’s Vape Lounge in Delano. “To try to quit smoking. To try to quit smoking cigarettes.”

Tran says you do not have to be 18 to enter their shop since they sell snacks, but he says the have a strict ID card rule for anyone trying to buy vape products.

“We do ID all of them, just to be on the safe side,” says Tran.

Principal Bloomer says vaping may appear to be trendy, so he says school leaders remain realistic about kids. He says there’s no room for vaping on campus. He also points out that almost all “vape juice” has nicotine and the nicotine is derived from tobacco.

“So, we are a tobacco-free campus, and that is the standard,” says Bloomer. “I think that maybe there’s a rebellious nature of some teens and so they are going to participate in some of those risky behaviors. I think that we are always trying to educate our students to some of the ills that are our there with regards to drugs, alcohol, other forms of tobacco, things that could affect their health… how it could hinder their development overall, so, we’re trying to educate them and as situations arise. We handle them and, again, try to inform those students and their families and the steps that need to be taken to protect their children.”

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Categories: Local News

Bob Lutz: Jayhawks win another Big 12 regular-season basketball championship

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 10:49am

All season long, we’ve been talking about why Kansas wasn’t going to win another Big 12 regular-season basketball championship.

We need to find better things to talk about.

The Jayhawks have done it again. Monday night’s win over Texas, which fittingly came on Senior Night at Allen Fieldhouse, wrapped up KU’s 14th consecutive title.

It breaks the record UCLA set under John Wooden from 1966-79 in the Pac-8/Pac-10. A small caveat here: the Bruins won eight national championships during that 13-season run.

We’ll get to KU’s national championships in a moment, but for now it’s time to soak in the magnitude of this accomplishment.

Last I checked, the Jayhawks do not play in the South Central Kansas League. They play in the Big 12, where nine other schools are doing their darndest to knock KU off its perch.

Before every season, we handicap the teams with the best chance of doing so. We find the holes in the KU roster. We come up with reasons why the streak will end.

It never does. Kansas just keeps hanging banners.

If the analytics are any indication, the Big 12 is loaded with really good – if not great – teams this season. One of KU’s losses was to Oklahoma State, at Allen Fieldhouse. The Jayhawks were blown out at Baylor. Both of those teams are settled into the bottom half of the Big 12 standings.

On the flip side, the Jayhawks won at West Virginia. And at TCU. And at Kansas State. And, in the biggest game of the Big 12 season, they won Saturday over Texas Tech in Lubbock.

This has been one of the strangest seasons on record in Lawrence and it started with the saga of freshman Billy “Drive My Car” Preston, a McDonald’s All-American who never got on the floor at KU. He ran afoul of the rules early, although the rules he ran afoul from have never been clarified.

Let’s just say it was a mess as KU coach Bill Self continued to assure fans, week to week, that a Preston appearance was just around the corner and that things were being worked out. Um, they never got worked out and Preston ultimately left the Jayhawks.

Kansas won a 14th straight championship with one of its thinnest rosters ever. Self made it work with exactly one reliable big man, Udoke Azubuike, who shot 78 percent from the field and 42 percent from the free-throw line.

Like I said, strange season.

Azubuike, Devonte Graham, Svi Mykhailuk, LaGerald Vick and Malik Newman have made 140 of a possible 150 starts. The Kansas bench has the depth of a water puddle, but give credit to Mitch Lightfoot and Marcus Garrett for at least giving the starters a few minutes off. Lightfoot, in particular, was able to spell the foul-prone Azubuike during important stretches.

The five regular starters all average at least 12.2 points. Graham and Mykhailuk have been deadly three-point shooters. The Jayhawks have averaged 82 points and that’s made up for some less-than-lockdown defense.

Graham, in particular, has been monumentally important to KU beyond his outstanding numbers. In 12 of the past 13 games, he’s played all 40 minutes. And it’s not like he’s been standing out there, chomping on bubble gum. The guy is in the middle of everything, offensively and defensively and these are supposedly the dog days of the college basketball season.

Graham represents the skating-on-thin-ice approach the Jayhawks have incorporated this season, simply out of necessity.

Give Bill Self credit for his no-kid-gloves approach to this Kansas team. Even with depth issues, Self called out a couple of his players after a home loss to Oklahoma State in early February and opted to start Lightfoot over Vick in a road game at TCU.

The Jayhawks, and especially Vick, responded to Self’s tough love. They are 6-1 since and Vick, whose season has been a roller coaster, has mostly been good.

Self went after his team this season. He challenged them, pushed them. There were times when a 14th straight conference championship looked improbable, to say the least.

But you can never count the Jayhawks out – at least during the regular season.

Which brings us to the postseason. KU’s lone national championship during its Big 12 streak happened in 2008. The Jayhawks also reached the Final Four in 2012.

Remember those first-round NCAA Tournament losses to Bucknell and Bradley? They happened after the first two Big 12 title runs.

If Kansas gets an A-plus for its Big 12 dominance, what grade do the Jayhawks get for the postseason under Self? B? B-minus? Lower?

Now we’re quibbling. This is a time to rejoice in the kind of conference domination we’ve never seen before in college basketball.

Or in other sports, really.

The New York Yankees have never won more than five American League pennants in a row.

North Carolina (four) and Duke (five) have not approached the kind of stranglehold over the ACC that Kansas has over the Big 12.

Kentucky won eight SEC titles in a row from 1945-52, but eight isn’t 14. Alabama’s longest streak of SEC football championships is five.

The Boston Celtics captured eight NBA championships in a row from 1959-66.

All are incredible streaks. All may never be matched.

What Kansas has accomplished, though, is unimaginable. Prolific. It’s just crazy.

Categories: Local News

Fire crews expect difficult wildfire season

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 9:02am

AUGUSTA, Kan. (KSNW) – Fire season is headed our way, and fire crews are starting to prepare for it.

Although the state has received some moisture, firefighters said it’s not enough.

“First part of the year we had a lot of rain, which we had a lot of growth Then the rain stopped of course, and now that’s dead fuel. So we have a lot of tall, thick dead fuel out there,” said Major Ray Marbut from the Augusta Department of Public Safety fire division.

Marbut added that if conditions continue, fire season could be “worse than normal.”

The Butler County Fire District is preparing by re-training crews on wildland fires. Some of the training includes how to protect homes and themselves, water supply issues and how to handle larger than normal fires.

Fire crews are also triple-checking their equipment and trucks every morning.

“What we want to do is decrease the number of breakdowns on the fire ground, so we try to make sure our trucks are in good shape,” said Marbut.

Grass fires increase during the late-winter and early spring.

According to Marbut, crews are currently responding to the same amount of grass fires as this time last year. However, crews are responding to larger fires.

Marbut offered tips to protect your home, especially those in rural areas, and ways to help responding fire crews.

  • Establish a 100-foot defendable zone in all directions. Keep grass short and remove combustibles.
  • Choose plants with loose branching habits, non-resinous woody material, high moisture content in leaves, and little seasonal accumulation of dead vegetation.
  • Stack wood at least 30 feet away from home and other buildings.
  • Keep road signs and address numbers visible from the road to help fire crews.
  • Clean the gutter and roof.

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Categories: Local News

Some Instant Pot models overheating

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 8:23am

Instant Pot said it has received a small number of reports of the Gem 65 8-in-1 Multicooker overheating.

The company said it can result in localized melting damage to the underside of the product.

Instant Pot believes the problem only affects batch codes 1728, 1730, 1731, 1734, and 1746.

The four-digit batch code is at the bottom right of the silver label on the underside of product.

Instant Pot has not yet issued a recall and said it is working with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The company said it will be providing more information about how to receive a replacement product.

In the meantime, consumers with the affected models should stop using them immediately.

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Categories: Local News

Laura’s Look: A Little Rain For Some

KSN - Tue, 02/27/2018 - 3:09am

Looks like we’ll round out the month of February with springy temperatures and a little rain.

Tuesday starts off sunny and breezy. Clouds sneak in through the day with an increasing chance of light rain showers.

Bus Stop Forecast

Best bet to get wet is on the drive home. Amounts look light, you’ll likely just need to run the windshield wipers on low.

Tuesday 5PM Tuesday 10PM

Rain chances linger into Wednesday morning. It’ll stay warm enough to where we won’t have to worry about ice or snow.

Wednesday 8AM

Clouds clear out Wednesday night. Noticeably cooler but pleasant through week’s end.

Temperature Trend

I’ll have a detailed timeline of the precipitation on Kansas Today. We’ll also talk about how much rain in my Storm Tracker 3 Forecast. – Laura Bannon

Categories: Local News

Intrust will be a dry arena during NCAA Tournament

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 11:18pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – There will be plenty of things for fans to do once the NCAA Tournament lands in Wichita next month.

But it’s what fans won’t be able to do inside Intrust Bank Arena that has people talking.

Because of NCAA rules, arena officials say, you will have to wait before or after the games if you want to enjoy a beer or cocktail, because there will be no alcoholic beverages allowed inside during the tournament.

“My first reaction is woah! What am I-what’s going on?” said Tad Snarenberger, who is going to the tournament.

Like many, Snarenberger, who has tickets to the tourney, had no clue it would be a dry arena.

“I’ll probably have a dinner with beer before we go there,” he said.

But not all are disappointed about it.

“Once we found out that the arena was going to be dry, we definitely ramped up our order,” said Crystal McDonald, owner of Xclusive Events.

Her company will be spearheading the Courtside Commerce event with food, games and you guessed it, alcohol.

So if you’re team isn’t playing as well as you hoped for, you may just have to wait until after the game to drown your sorrows.

“I definitely think they’re going to be a lot thirstier,” said McDonald. “So, I think it’ll be- it’ll be better for the bars around town.”

“I guess we’ll save nine bucks a beer,” said Snarenberger. “Won’t have to worry about it going to the basketball game now.”

Some people may be wondering if they can leave the game to grab a drink and go back in.

Intrust Bank Arena officials say the answer is no. You can only do that in between sessions.

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Categories: Local News

Kansas wins Big 12 title outright with 80-70 win over Texas

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 10:40pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) – Svi Mykhailiuk had 17 points, Devonte Graham added 10 and 11 assists and No. 6 Kansas beat Texas 80-70 Monday night.

The Jayhawks (24-6, 13-4 Big 12) used a strong night from seniors Mykhailiuk and Graham in what was the pair and walk-on Clay Young’s senior night and final game in Allen Fieldhouse. Their powerful start helped them control the game early, forcing the Longhorns (17-13, 7-10 Big 12) to burn four timeouts in the first half.

Kerwin Roach II led the way for Texas, scoring 18 points and dishing out eight assists just days after hitting the game-winner against Oklahoma State. Jacob Young posted 14 points and five rebounds.

The Longhorns were without star freshman Mo Bamba, who missed the game with a toe injury. Bamba, who leads the team in rebounds (10.6) and is second in points (13) per game, had 22 points, 15 rebounds and a career-high eight blocks against Kansas back in December.

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KBI investigating officer-involved shooting in Pottawatomie County

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 9:47pm

WAMEGO, Kan. (KSNW) – The Kansas Bureau of Investigation is investigating an officer-involved shooting in Pottawatomie County. The incident occurred in Wamego shortly after 6 p.m. Monday night.

The KBI said in a news release preliminary information indicates that around 5:30 p.m. Monday law enforcement officers responded to the report of an armed carjacking at the Kreem Kup Drive-In on W. Hwy 24 in Wamego. Law enforcement officers from several agencies made contact with the suspect at about 6 p.m. in the area of 8th St. and Pine St.

The KBI said a short time later, gunfire was exchanged between a male suspect and five law enforcement officers from four agencies. Those agencies included the Kansas Highway Patrol, the Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Office, the Wamego Police Department, and the St. George Police Department.

The suspect was pronounced dead at the scene. No law enforcement officers were injured during the incident  However, one officer was transported to a hospital as a precaution due to a health concern.

KBI officials said they’re waiting to release the name of the suspect until next of kin is notified.

A KBI spokesperson said no law enforcement officers were injured in the incident.

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Derby school puts focus on love-based discipline, not fear-based discipline

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 9:17pm

DERBY, Kan. (KSNW) – Imagine a school where the term love is used more than discipline.

Derby Hills Elementary is a Trauma Sensitive School (TSS), a school based on creating a safe place where children can learn how to work through their emotions.

“We are kind of shifting our mindset and we’re saying instead of fear based discipline, it’s really love-based discipline. We want kids to be engaged and comply because they love us, so it’s really built on strong relationships with kids and responding and not reacting,” said Derby Hills Elementary School Principal James Moffett.

Trauma-sensitive teachers often offer a comfort zone to their students. They prefer to give kids a safe place where they can retreat and calm down.

“It’s really about first making kids want to be here and two making sure our response to them, encourages them, make sure they know that they’re loved and we want them to do the right thing because we care about them,” Moffett said.

Moffett first introduced the trauma sensitive training to Derby Hills in 2015 with the goal of decreasing bad behavior and increasing teacher to student instruction time.

“Overall, our behavioral data for the last four years is incredible. When I first got here in 2014, 2015, I had over 500 office referrals in one year and right now we are sitting at, for a year we will be at less than 200, I’m sure,” he said.

Moffett told KSN the fewer number of behavioral problems has a lot to do with how students and teachers are taught to deal with their emotions. For example, every classroom has its own peace corner.

“It’s just a regulation spot. So if I feel myself as a student getting anxious, frustrated or upset I’m going to step away from that lesson that is happening in the classroom. I’m going to go to that designated space in my classroom, I’m going to self regulate and deescalate myself. Lots of times, the teacher doesn’t even have to be involved in that. When they feel like they are calm, they go right back to class. That takes only two to three minutes, but the cool thing about that is they’re not being sent up here to the principal’s office. They are still in the classroom. They can still hear the instruction from their teacher and then when they’re ready they go right back to class,” Moffett explained.

Students also study social and emotional curriculum. The curriculum gives the students a chance to learn how they can manage their emotions in the most positive way.

“It’s kind of a gradual release of responsibility. I want to make sure they know how to regulate themselves. They can’t be responsible for anyone else’s actions or how anyone else treats them, but they can always be responsible in how they respond in that moment,” he said. “The benefit is we see more instructional time in the class because teachers aren’t having to stop and redirect every 5 minutes about a behavior because they know the expectation and they know we genuinely care about them.”

KSN asked Moffett he thinks the trauma sensitive style of teaching is preparing his students for the real world.

“I don’t think its being too nice. I think we truly are preparing them to be successful because when we don’t focus on these things I think that’s when we have issues with kids react and they’re upset because they haven’t been taught what’s the appropriate way to respond in those unkind situations,” he said. “That’s one misconception about trauma sensitive schools, that we are saying kids can just do whatever they want. No, that’s not what we are saying. What we are really saying is we are responding. We are regulating our own emotions.”

Moffett recently returned from Washington D.C. where he spoke at a national conference for TSS.

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One of the last Tuskegee airmen called home from Wichita

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 5:26pm
Photo Courtesy: Kansas African-American Museum

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The home-going celebration for one of the last surviving Tuskegee airmen brought people to Wichita from all over the world. KSN attended the funeral and spoke with family and close friends who say this is a day of celebration. Dr. Donald Jackson was a pilot, a boy scout, and a devoted father who left six children behind.

“Dad was a self-made man who believed in doing things his way, and he made sure to live his life that way,” said Jackson’s eldest daughter, Patrice Jackson. “He made his own decisions all his life, and I think a lot of men would love to be able to say that. He had great values and great morals and a code of which to live by.”

That code of honor is now emulated by Jackson’s children.

“It’s a phenomenal legacy to have as part of our family,” said Jackson’s youngest daughter, Jocelyn Jackson. “He graduated from high school and was enlisted; went into the army and was sent to the Tuskegee to train.”

Jackson’s son, Stuart Jackson, said when his dad returned home he brought the morals of the Tuskegee airmen with him.

Photo Courtesy: Kansas African-American Museum

“Dad was really big with the Boy Scouts,” said Jackson. “He really tried to live the scout laws as part of his life and being prepared was one of his big sayings so, I think as kids we’ve always tried to do that.”

KSN also spoke with Rodney cousin who worked closely with the late Jackson, as a boy scout administrator.

“I would describe him would be quiet strength but definitely well-loved and respected, and it’s a huge loss for the scouting community, and he will be missed,” said Cousin.

Dr. Donald Jackson’s remains will be placed in the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

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Lawmakers to tackle K-12 funding after break

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 5:00pm

TOPEKA, Kan. (CAPITOL BUREAU) – Lawmakers are on break until the middle of the week, and when they return, the discussion over paying for schools is expected to heat up.

The Supreme Court’s deadline for lawmakers to come up with a solution for paying for schools is a little over two months away.

“That’s obviously the biggest issue this session and we’re approaching some deadlines,” explained State Rep. Fred Patton, R-Topeka.

Before leaving for the long weekend, some lawmakers questioned why K-12 funding hasn’t been a top priority so far this legislative session.

“Not only am I frustrated, people in both parties, responsible legislatures cannot understand why in the world we’ve been sitting around on our hands doing nothing,” said State Rep. John Carmichael, D-Wichita.

In October, the state’s high court ruled lawmakers weren’t adequately paying for schools. The districts involved in the lawsuit have asked for an additional $600 million.

“As responsible legislatures, we can’t ignore the other functions of state government that folks really depend on,” explained House Majority Leader Rep. Don Hineman, R-Dighton.

One of those functions House budget committee chairman Troy Waymaster points to is higher education.

“They sustained a four percent cut two years ago and now they’re asking for that four percent cut to be reinstated, well that’s going to prove difficult if we have to address K-12 education and try to make the cuts whole again,” said Waymaster.

Republican leaders hired an out-of-state expert to conduct a school finance study. Part of the study was presented to lawmakers this past Friday. The final results of the study will be presented to lawmakers mid-March.

“This is a delaying tacit, it is a tool being used by the leadership here to force Senators and Representatives at the last minute to vote for a bad solution,” said Carmichael.

The Supreme Court gave lawmakers an April 30 deadline to come up with a funding solution.

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Court documents detail case against teacher charged with exploitation of a child

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 4:23pm

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – KSN News is learning more about the case against a Derby Middle School teacher charged with sexual exploitation of a child.

Court documents detail the evidence officials said they have on Cody Chitwood. He was arrested on Jan. 23.

The affidavit shows that a detective noticed that large amounts of child porn was being transmitted from an IP address. After determining who was using the account, a search warrant was issued.

At Chitwood’s home, officials discovered a laptop computer. Chitwood admitted that it was his, and a detective found more than fifty images of child porn. The detective also discovered evidence of more than 200 deleted files.

Chitwood is charged with eleven counts of sexual exploitation of a child.

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No charges in fatal officer-involved shooting in southwest Kansas

KSN - Mon, 02/26/2018 - 3:30pm

GARDEN CITY, Kan. (KSNW) – An officer-involved shooting in southwest Kansas last year has been ruled as justified.

Officers fatally shot 29-year-old Cristino Umana-Garcia last October in rural Finney County.

When deputies and police arrived, Umana became aggressive and threatened them. He was armed with a knife and began running towards them when two opened fire.

The investigating attorney ruled that the officers felt they were in danger when they opened fire.

A special prosecutor ruled through reports and available video footage that the officers were justified.

Garden City Police Department statement:

First and foremost, our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Cristino Umana-Garcia and others involved. The Garden City Police Department has cooperated fully with the Kansas Bureau of Investigation as it pertains to the criminal investigation into this incident. GCPD has also completed its own internal investigation of the event and finds no violation of federal or state law, City of Garden City policies or procedures, or Garden City Police Department
regulations.”

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