KOFO Local News

Ottawa dragnet this afternoon for man wanted by Riley County police

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 22, 2017

OTTAWA — Local law enforcement were looking for someone this afternoon wanted by the Riley County Police Department. The Ottawa Police Department is assisting the Riley County Police Department with an active investigation with a crime that occurred in Manhattan,” said Ottawa assistant police chief Adam Weingartner. Officers including Ottawa police, Franklin County deputies, state troopers and KBI were at the Little Dragon Chinese Restaurant at Main Street and Keokuk, and at a house in the 600 block of North Cedar. Officers talked to a woman in handcuffs at the restaurant. She was later released. At the same time, several officers blocked off Cedar Street and surrounded the house. A Lawrence Police Department armored car was at the scene. Officers shouted orders via a public address system for people in the house to surrender. Officers eventually stormed the house. The person of interest identified by the Riley County Police Department during a news conference is a 38-year-old Manhattan man who served prison time for a shooting in Ottawa 17 years ago, KMAN Radio, Manhattan, reported. Steven Harris is wanted in connection with a murder of 39-year old German Gonzalez-Garcia, 39, in Manhattan Sunday night. A second man is in critical condition in a Manhattan hospital but is expected to survive, Riley County police told KMAN. Harris served 14 years in prison for attempted second degree murder for a shooting in an Ottawa bar on Dec. 2, 2000, KMAN reported. He was released in 2015.
Monday, May 22, 6 p.m.

Powerful storms likely to roll through area

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 18, 2017

TOPEKA — The Ottawa area could see some wild weather beginning this afternoon and lasting into tonight. A warm front will bring a powerful line of thunderstorms will reach the area this afternoon after 5 p.m.and they’re shaping up to bring all sorts of nasty weather, including tornadoes, high winds and hail, National Weather Service forecaster Chad Ohmit said. “The height of the main event might be 6 or 7,” he said. A second wave of thunderstorms will develop in central Kansas and will likely hit this area later tonight, he said.
Thursday, May 18, 4 p.m.

Name change pondered for new industrial park.

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

OTTAWA — County and city commissioners are getting into the proximity of a decision on what to call the new industrial park south of Ottawa. A marketing study and a local marketing committee have whether to keep its present name, Rock Creek Development Park, or change it to another name. The study has suggested three names, including Rock Creek Business Park, Proximity Park or Prairie Spirit Opportunity Park. However, most Ottawa and Franklin county commissioners say they’re leaning to changing the name to Proximity Park, which is a sleeker, more unique name that suggests the park’s proximity to highway and rail connections and to the Kansas City area. County commissioners could decide on the name Wednesday. The name and the logo of the new industrial park must grab national site selectors within 10 to 15 seconds to be effective, economic development director James Oltham told county commissioners this morning. At a recent meeting, Oltham said he and about 125 other economic development directors met with 15 site selectors. “Time is of critical importance … the idea in those sort of settings is to get them interested enough and get it to stick in their mind.” Site selectors do about 90 percent of their search for new industrial sites on-line before making any contacts, and a name and logo is absolutely necessary, he said. The city and county have been jointly working to develop the new industrial park and are in the process of issuing bonds to handle their improvements to the park.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

City eyes name change for auditorium

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

OTTAWA – “It’s a matter of going back to the past…so we can march into the future.” That sums up what is going on with the Ottawa Municipal Auditorium…soon to become Memorial Auditorium, its original name, which is in honor of World War I veterans. Auditorium director Tiffany Evans noted that the facility somehow became the municipal auditorium when it underwent a renovation and reopened in 1978. The city commission is expected to approve the name change at its regular meeting Wednesday.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

State, county unemployment rates drop

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

TOPEKA — The state unemployment rate dropped in March. The jobless rates for Franklin County and surrounding counties also dropped in March. The unemployment rate dropped to 3.8 percent in March from 4 percent in February. “Employment estimates also improved over the month, with the household survey indicating more Kansans working and the survey of employers showing more jobs on their payrolls,” said Emilie Doerksen, state labor economist. “March estimates do not show significant changes in employment or unemployment compared to last year.” The jobless rate in Franklin County dropped to 3.9 percent in March from 4.4 percent in February. Miami County’s dropped to 4 from 4.8; Anderson County dropped to 4.4 from 5.7; Osage County dropped to 4.3 from 5; Douglas County dropped to 3 from 3.3; Linn County dropped to 6.2 from 8; and Johnson County dropped to 3.1 from 3.2.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

Two recent Anderson County grads killed in unrelated incidents

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

GARNETT — Two recent Anderson County High School graduates died this month in unrelated incidents. Brittney Feurborn, 23, Pittsburg, died from injuries suffered in an April 15th ATV crash near Lane. She was valedictorian in the class of 2012 and had graduated from Pittsburg State last year, according to the Anderson County Review. 23-year-old Tyler Gibson’s body was found Aril 17th after jumping off a bridge into the Kansas River in Pottawatomie County following a police chase on April 5th. He graduated from the high school in 2011.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

City wins trail grant

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

OTTAWA — The city says improvements to the Flint Hills Trail between the waste water treatment and Seventh street should be completed by early fall. The city received a $28,000 grant, through the Kansas Dept. of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, to cover the trail with crushed rock. The city will provide $52,500 for the project’s labor, rock-hauling, installation and equipment costs. The Flint Hills Trail runs between Herington and Osawatomie and connects to the head of the Prairie Spirit Trail in Ottawa.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

Two new attorneys join the legal bar

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

TOPEKA — An Ottawa woman and a Carbondale man were among several attorneys scheduled to be officially sworn in Friday at the Kansas Judicial Center in Topeka. Jennifer Elizabeth Spangler and Lonnie Jerome Hajney have successfully passed the bar exam.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

Sentencing rescheduled in death of OU student

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

OTTAWA — Sentencing for a former Ottawa University football player who was the driver in a crash that killed a fellow OU football player has rescheduled to June 19. Jordan Reed, Wichita, pleaded no contest in Franklin County District Court earlier this yearn to misdemeanor vehicular homicide in the death of Samuel Brazeal, 19, Perrin, Texas. The two were driving and drinking during the Veterans Day holiday of 2015 when Reed started down the Flint Hills Trail at a high rate of speed. Reed was going 50 to 60 miles an hour when he hit his brakes before crossing the narrow pedestrian bridge just west of I-35, County Attorney Stephen Hunting said. Reed’s pickup went off the bridge and fell into the creek bed below, killing Brazeal.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.

Garnett to get new city manager

Posted in Uncategorized by kofonews on May 1, 2017

GARNETT — Garnett has a new city manager. City commissioners have approved a contract with Girard city administrator Christopher Weiner. Weiner expects to begin about July 17. His salary will be $85,000 per year, plus other benefits. He succeeds Joyce Martin, who is retiring after 50 years as a city employee.
Monday, May 1, 1 p.m.