Stand-in purchase of guns in Johnson County shootings is a puzzle

Authorities are searching for a middleman who is believed to have purchased guns for F. Glenn Miller Jr., the avowed anti-Semite accused of killing three people outside Jewish facilities last weekend. As a convicted felon, Miller is prohibited from buying or possessing a firearm. Such a gun-buying go-between represents a vexing problem for law enforcement.

Manhunt is detailed as Grandview man is charged in area highway shootings

Like pieces of a puzzle, Kansas City police used tips about an erratic driver, a fingerprint from a plastic bag of shell casings and a bullet from a house that was shot last year to link Mohammed Whitaker, 27, to a series of recent highway shootings. Jackson County prosecutors announced 18 felony charges against Whitaker involving nine separate shootings. Whitaker remained in jail Friday in lieu of a $1 million cash-only bond.

Casino says defect in cards made by Blue Springs company led to big wins

In the world of high-stakes gambling, the edge between clever play and cheating can be thin and arguable. A lawsuit says poker superstar Phil Ivey, playing baccarat, took advantage of an alleged defect in cards manufactured by Gemaco to cheat the Borgata casino in Atlantic City, N.J., out of nearly $10 million. And a British casino that withheld $12 million in winnings from Ivey for what it claims was the same type of cheating scheme is now being sued by the card player. I

Charge dropped in Tonganoxie street-painting caper

City had cited Charlie “Tuna” Conrad for painting a green line down Fourth Street on March 15 before Tonganoxie’s St. Patrick’s parade. Various “leprechauns” have done the deed since the late John McCaffrey started the parade in the late 1980s.

Kansas regents stick with social media policy for universities

Language about respecting free speech may be added to policy, which says a university CEO can discipline employees, up to termination, for social media communications that affect the school’s ability to carry out its functions. Some have said the policy is too strict.

Prairie chickens arrive in Missouri from Nebraska

The Missouri Department of Conservation says a group of prairie chickens has been brought to the state from Nebraska. Forty-five chicks were released at the Dunn Ranch Prairie in northwest Missouri, the department said Wednesday. This is the second year of a three-year program to help repopulate the endangered species.

Days after tragedy, Jewish Community Center reopens with a mixture of emotions

“I think it’s important for us to continue on as before,” Debby Winkel, 64, of Olathe said Wednesday, the first day the Jewish Community Center opened after two people were fatally shot there and a third person was killed at a second Jewish community site in Overland Park. “I think we owe it as a show of support for those families who lost loved ones and to show support for one another.”

Missouri lawmakers cut taxes as they ponder raising them

On Wednesday, the General Assembly passed a bill incrementally cutting taxes by $620 million over at least five years, a measure Gov. Jay Nixon will probably veto. On Thursday, a Senate committee is expected to back a bill asking voters to raise the state’s sales tax by a penny for 10 years to fund updates to transportation infrastructure — money likely to rebuild I-70 nearly from Illinois to Kansas.

Armed robber was never told to report to prison

After he was convicted of armed robbery in 2000, Cornealious Anderson was sentenced to 13 years behind bars and told to await instructions on when and where to report to prison. But those instructions never came.

Healing is the message at interfaith service for victims of Sunday’s shootings

Clergy of different faiths, joined by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, delivered messages of hope and unity Thursday before more than 1,300 people gathered at the Jewish Community Center in Overland Park. “A pall has been cast over our great nation,” Holder said. “We gather today not in joy, but in solemn reflection.” The overall message, however, was focused on the power of love and unity to combat hatred and evil.

Press conference scheduled in highway shootings arrest

Police said more details will be released at a 1 p.m. press conference. Kansas City police raided a Grandview residence Thursday afternoon and arrested a man suspected in the series of shootings on area roadways that injured three people and put drivers on edge for nearly two weeks.

No gap in Kansas law on hate crimes

One difficulty of hate-crime laws can be the high legal standards. Some call for proving not only that a murder had occurred, but at the same time that bias was the motivation. If reasonable doubt exists on either, the whole case could implode. Better to get the conviction and then offer the judge or jury the ability to upgrade the sentence if indeed the crime had been motivated by hate.

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