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Vinita High School Goes on Lockdown

Vinita High School goes on lockdown after law enforcement receives a threat pertaining to the high school.  The Vinita Police Department and Craig County Sheriff’s Department responded immediately.  The high school was locked down and the school was searched and cleared.  There is no evidence that any student, faculty member, or other staff was in any danger at any time. 

The Craig County Sheriff’s Department says this was certainly a stressful time for many members of the community and the coordination between the school system and local law enforcement provided for an orderly vetting of the threat.  They would also like to thank the multitude of agencies that responded to assist in this situation.  Vinita High School will resume classes tomorrow.  The investigation is ongoing and further information will be released at a later date.

Arrest in Caney for Domestic Battery


The Caney Police Department responds to a domestic disturbance in the 200 block of South Wood St early this weekend. Upon arrival at the residence, officers learned that a male and female had been involved in a physical altercation.


Officers interviewed both the male and female and after speaking with the two, they arrested 48-year-old John Swalley for domestic battery. Swalley later posted bond for the charge.

SPARK Grant Success Story and New Grant on the Horizon


The nearly $6.5 million SPARK Grant that Montgomery County had received has led to some success stories across the county according to the Montgomery County Action Council Director Trisha Purdon. One of the success stories is the Caney grocery that has been in the works for nearly ten years.


Purdon also brought up the “Shuttered Venue” Grant that might be rolling out this week and will be administered by the Small Business Administration. Purdon says this grant will help performance venues.


The complete interview with Purdon can be found on our website at KGGF underneath the Community tab.

Cherryvale Elementary Classes Cancelled Tomorrow


Classes have been cancelled at Lincoln Central Elementary in Cherryvale tomorrow. A steam pipe ruptured in the building they will have no heat until the pipe can be repaired. They believe the pipe can be fixed by tomorrow.


Lincoln Elementary students will have the day off. Cherryvale Middle and High School as well as Thayer will have school as normal. CMHS students who need to stay home to care for younger siblings will be excused if parents contact the CMHS office.

New Government Vehicles Approved


Two government bodies in Montgomery County will be getting some new vehicles.


The town of Liberty will be getting a fire truck. The vehicle is from Reed Truck Sales in Wamego, Kansas, and is a 2009 Peterbilt costing in the range of $28,000-$35,000.


The other vehicles approved at the most recent Montgomery County Commission meeting are a pair of 2020 Dodge Durangos going to the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office. They will both be from Superior Emergency Response Vehicles in Andover, Kansas costing $82,400. The first one is for the transport officer and the other one is for patrol.

One Person Arrested, Another Still Loose


A woman was arrested in connection with a burglary while another person is still loose.


Parsons Police responded to the 2200 block of Clark for a report of a burglary. When officers arrived at the scene, they spoke to the homeowner who stated that while checking on his house he found a white male exiting the rear of the house. The owner approached the individual who refused to identify himself and left the area on foot before law enforcement arrival. The man was later identified as Roy Cruz. He is a white male approximately 6' tall with a medium build and medium complexion with a mustache.


Officers collected evidence at the scene and a white female was arrested from inside of the residence. Tamara Lee Armitage was arrested for suspicion of Criminal Damage to Property, Theft, and Aggravated Burglary.


This continues to be an on-going investigation.

Caney PD Officers Show Restraint During Arrest


Caney Police Officers show restraint as a man pretends to pull a gun on them multiple times during arrest. Early this morning officers with Caney PD stopped a vehicle for an improper turn. Upon contact with the driver, who was identified as Charles Douglas, officers discovered his driver's license was suspended.


Douglas stated that the officers would have to kill him because he was not going back to jail, and if they did not kill him he would kill one of the officers. Douglas failed to comply with verbal commands and reached behind his back as if he was pulling a gun. He then ran off on foot while Caney Officers pursued. During the pursuit Douglas stopped, reached behind his back again and shoved his hands forward in the illusion he had a gun.


An officer took Douglas to the ground where a physical altercation ensued and Douglas attempted to take one of the officers weapons. A short while later Douglas was placed in restraints by both officers and taken into custody for driving while suspended, assault of a law enforcement officer, interference with a LEO, and criminal threat.

Go Fund Me for Coach Flores


A Go Fund Me has been set up for former Coffeyville Community College Red Raven Football Coach Aaron Flores. Coach Flores passed away last week after battling with COVID-19. He was diagnosed in mid December and after his symptoms progressed was flown to the hospital in Omaha, where he had received his double lung transplant back in 2018.


A link to donate to Coach Flores's Go Fund Me can be found here. So far almost $20,000 has been raised of the $50,000 goal.

Aggravated Domestic Battery Leads to Arrest


A Parsons man has been arrested on multiple charges including attempted murder.


Parsons Police responded to a call in the police department lobby for a reported battery that took place in the 3000 block of Dirr. Officers spoke to the victim who stated that the suspect had strangled them and threatened to kill them during an altercation. EMS evaluated the victim's injuries was later transported to the hospital.


Sergeant Cheryl Landon and Corporal Stewart Shirk arrived at the victim and suspect's residence and arrested Drew Bishop Michael Newton for Aggravated Domestic Battery and Attempted Murder. Newton was taken into custody without incident and processed into the Parsons Police Department facility until his first appearance in a Labette County Court.

Lincoln Central Elementary Resuming In-Person Classes Today


Lincoln Central Elementary in Fredonia is resuming in-person classes today.


USD 484 made the decision Wednesday to close the school yesterday due to multiple students and staff having to quarantine. Thorough cleaning took place in the building and it also allowed the district to conduct contact tracing protocols.


Lincoln was the only school in the district that was closed and online learning was not in session due to the lack of technology available to all students.

Montgomery County Man and Woman Arrested


Earlier this week, Montgomery County Deputies received a report of a crime involving burglary and theft. Deputies were called to the east side of Independence when a witness from a previous case observed a truck pulling a trailer that the witness knew to be stolen. Upon further investigation, it was learned the individual who possessed the trailer had just purchased it from 36-year-old Tanna Darnell of Independence and 39-year-old Terry Werner of Cherryvale. The individual that purchased the trailer also purchased other items that have been identified as stolen property from a separate incident.


Deputies responded to the location where the individual told deputies he purchased the property. While at that location a Deputy observed Darnell and Werner enter a house near the location and were later arrested after it was determined that they did not have permission to be at the home.


Werner and Darnell have been charged with possession of stolen property and burglary. Werner also had multiple arrest warrants Darnell was found what is believed to be narcotics among her personal belongings.

Humboldt Man Arrested on Various Drug Charges


A 35-year-old man has been arrested in Chanute on multiple drug charges.


Earlier this week, Chanute PD conducted a traffic stop in the area of Main and Tennessee. During the stop, Chanute PD K9 sensed illegal narcotics in the vehicle. During the search of the vehicle, items associated with illegal drugs were seized.


Officers arrested Michael Francis Naff of Humboldt for possession of meth with intent to distribute within 1,000 feet of a school, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.


Naff was transported to the Neosho County Jail without incident.

UPDATE: Whitaker in Custody at Woodson County Jail


UPDATE 9:37 AM: According to the Woodson County Sheriff's Office, Whitaker has been found and is custody at the Woodson County Jail. He had been reported to be seen in the area by a resident of the county.


The Parsons Police Department has reported the recovery of a truck related to an ongoing theft and shooting investigation. Early Wednesday morning, police officers were called to the 3100 block of Main Street for a report of a truck with an ATM tied to it.


When officers arrived, they discovered a pickup that had an ATM chained to it near Labette Bank. The truck had previously been reported stolen from Independence on Tuesday. Two weapons, an AR-15 and a Glock pistol, were also reported stolen with the vehicle. The AR-15 was in the vehicle when officers recovered the truck, but the Glock was not.


Benjamin Ryan Whitaker, a white male standing at 5'6" and weighing 140 pounds, continues to be a person of interest in both the vehicle theft and the ATM theft. He is also the suspect in a shooting that occurred in Coffeyville last week. The FBI and KBI have both been notified to assist in the case.

Cherokee County Phase 2 Vaccination Appointments Available


The Cherokee County Health Department is scheduling appointments for phase two of COVID-19 vaccinations.


Those who would like to be vaccinated must call the Cherokee County Health Department at 620-429-3087.


The drive-thru vaccination area will be at 110 E. Walnut in Columbus. Those getting vaccinated should turn north onto Indiana Street from Maple Street. Those with an appointment will be allowed to turn west onto Walnut Street, which will otherwise be closed to through traffic. You are asked to arrive on time and not to show up early and you must stay in your vehicle. After being vaccinated, you will be asked to stay in a designated parking lot for 15-30 minutes to ensure you don't have any adverse reactions.


Those that are eligible to receive the vaccine are the following:

-People 65+ years of age

-Firefighters, police officers, first responders and correctional officers

-K-12 and childcare workers including teachers, custodians, bus drivers and other staff

-Grocery store workers and food services

-Food processing including meat processing plants

-Homeless shelters

-Emergency shelters or safe houses for victims of domestic violence

-Senior living homes


The vaccine provided by the Cherokee County Health Department is being provided at no cost and is the Moderna vaccine, which will require a second dose in 24-28 days from the date of the initial dose.


Vaccine appointments will be accepted until all doses are gone.

Labette County Shifts to Phase 2 of COVID Vaccinations


Labette County Health Department Administrator Lisa Hoppock states that the county is shifting to phase two of their COVID-19 vaccinations.


The Labette County Health Department will be offering vaccines to those 65 years of age and older. Hoppock said that the health department is not accepting walk-ins, so in order to make an appointment, you have to call 620-778-6272. The only way to make an appointment is by calling that number and Hoppock asks that no calls be made directly to the health department.

Seven New Positive COVID-19 Cases at USD 446


Independence Public Schools was notified by the Montgomery County Health Department that a staff member and two students at Independence High School, a staff member and a student at Independence Middle School, a staff member at Eisenhower Elementary, and a staff member at Riley Early Learning Center have all tested positive for COVID-19.


All areas that those students and staff members have used over the past several days are closed off to be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Those who were identified as close contacts and those that tested positive will not be allowed to return to school until the health department deems it safe.


If you have any questions, you can contact Superintendent Rusty Arnold at 620-496-4706.

Washington County Sheriff's Office Warns of Phone Scam


Washington County residents have informed the Sheriff's Office that someone is calling posing to be a member of the WCSO.


According to Undersheriff Jon Copeland, the caller is telling people that they have an active warrant for their arrest and money is needed to be paid via phone, or other information is needed to resolve the warrant. He said the WCSO does not call people by phone to inform them of an outstanding arrest warrant nor do they collect any fees, fines, or costs associated with any criminal or civil case in district court.


Residents should ask questions such as who is calling, what is the callback number, and ID or badge number, and call the non-emergency number at 918.338.4001 to report the call.


Undersheriff Copeland said this is not a new scam and one that has surfaced here in the past. He said the WCSO, Deputies, staff, or personnel of the Sheriff's Office do not confirm arrest warrants by phone.

Speed Limit Leaving Caney is 35


The Caney Police Department says from Casey's General store going south on Highway 75 to Dollar General there is no posted speed limit sign, this is is as 35 MPH speed zone until you reach the posted 55 MPH speed sign just south of Dollar General.


Caney PD is concerned with the high speeds they have been seeing going south out of Caney. With some drivers reaching speeds of 50 to 60 MPH between 6th St. and the south city limits.


Caney PD has reached out to the Kansas Department of Transportation and expressed their concerns about the lack of speed limit signs in this area, and the potential for accidents. KDOT controls the speed limit and is in charge of posting speed limit signs. Please use caution in this area as other drivers are entering and exiting the highway at the Dollar General and Ridgeway St. exits.

Youth Soccer and Flag Football Registrations Underway


With Spring right around the corner, the Coffeyville Recreation Commission has started accepting sign-ups for spring soccer and flag football. The Director of the Coffeyville Area Chamber of Commerce Candi Westbrook gives the details on who can sign up and how much time you have left to register.


A link to the registration page can be found here.

Montgomery County Sheriff's Office Looking to Raise Money for K9


The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office is seeking help from the citizens and business as they are looking to add two K9 officers to the force.


The last operational K9 Kiro has been retired due to age and emerging health problems. Sgt. Jeremy Hunsucker explains what kind of K9s they are looking for to replace Kiro.


The cost to purchase the K9 is $14,000 and Sgt. Hunsucker says every dollar helps.


Sgt. Hunsucker also said how close they are and how you can donate.


You can find the complete interview with Lisa Wilson and Sgt. Hunsucker at KGGF

Suspect in Cville Shooting Now a Suspect in ATM Theft


A person of interest in a Coffeyville shooting is now a suspect in an attempted theft of a bank ATM in Parsons. The Parsons Police Department says the suspect, Benjamin Whitaker, is considered to be armed and dangerous. Whitaker is a white male, 5'6” and 140lbs. If you see Whitaker or have any information regarding his whereabouts, Parsons PD says do not approach and call 911. The ATM was located at 32nd and Main in Parsons.


Whitaker is a suspect in a shooting in Coffeyville that occurred late last week. The other man involved in that shooting, Zachary Pule, was arrested for attempted murder in the 2nd degree and other charges related to the incident.

No Action Taken by Dewey City Council on Economic Development


After spending approximately 45 minutes in an executive session to discuss economic development on Tuesday night, the Dewey City Council took no action.


Mayor Tom Hays came right out of the gate saying there would be no action taken on matters pertaining to economic development.


Tuesday night marked the second straight meeting in which the Dewey City Council entered into an executive session to confer on matters pertaining to economic development. Unlike the first of the two meetings, the Council had an item on Tuesday night's agenda to discuss, consider and possibly approve the matters they conferred over in the executive session.

Still, no action was taken on Tuesday night.

High Winds Produce Very High Fire Danger in SEK


Warmer than normal temperatures are expected Wednesday in southeastern Kansas along with strong winds. If you add this with a lack of moisture in the area over the past couple of weeks you get a high risk of wildfires being able to spread quickly. Wind gusts have a chance to get up to 30+ mph.


Temperatures overnight will be in the upper 20s and lower 30s Wednesday night. It will be even warmer for Thursday with highs in the mid to upper 50s locally and into the 60s in the south-central parts of the state. Winds will die down significantly and a mixture of clouds and sunshine is expected.


As for Friday, it will be in the upper 40s and lower 50s with winds at 10-15 mph out of the northeast with little to no cloud cover.

Coffeyville Prepares for Installation of New Playground Equipment


New equipment is on the way for Coffeyville's Pfister Park. Public Works employees were on the scene Tuesday to begin removing some of the old toddler playground equipment at the park. Once removal is complete, the next step will be to backfill and level the area in preparation for the installation of the new equipment this upcoming spring.


The old equipment that was removed will be refurbished and installed at other parks in the city. Those locations are yet to be decided, but will be chosen by the city's Parks Advisory Board.

SPARK Deadline Extended


The Labette County Commission received a SPARK update during their most recent meeting. Parsons Economic Development Director Jim Zaleski says they've extended the deadline for the SPARK money to be spent.


Zaleski says the city of Oswego has around $6,000 left, Edna has just over $1,000, Parsons has almost $4,000 and the county has just under $300,000 left.


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