Garden City Telegram from Garden City, Kansas on June 23, 1976 · Page 1
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Garden City Telegram from Garden City, Kansas · Page 1

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Wednesday, June 23, 1976
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Free of Death Sentence TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — For the first time in a .decade, Kansas has no one under death sentence for a crime. Kenneth Kilpatrick of Hutchinson, the last person under, death sentence in the state, had his sentence modified to life in prison eight months ago with little fanfare. The only other person handed a death sentence in Kansas in the past 10 years, William Hamilton III, also of Hutchinson, had his sentence modified to life in prison three years ago this fall. Hamilton was the last person sentenced to die in Kansas before the 1972 U.S. Supreme Court decision rendered this state's capital punishment law inoperative. Efforts to reinstate the death penalty in recent legislative sessions have failed. •;«!«!«' The strongest effort was mounted in the 1976 session when the House and Senate leadership both strongly endorsed restoration of the death penalty. However, the effort bogged down in dispute be- tween the Senate and House over which types of murder to make punishable by death. Proponents of capital punishment, vow a renewed effort in 1977, claiming a majority of Kansans want the death penalty restored to the books. However, with all 165 legislative seats up for reelection this year, no one can be certain what the mood of the new legislature will be next January. The last executions in Kansas were in 1965. They included Richard E. Hickock and Perry E. Smith, found guilty of killing the Herbert Clutter family in their home near Garden City. By 1970, Kilpatrick was the only person under death sentence in Kansas, and he was at Lamed State Hospital for psychiatric treatment. When former Warden Raymond Gaffney took charge of the Lansing men's penitentiary, he did away with the old death row there—about 1970. Gaffney had the old gallows used to hang those sentenced to death in this state dismantled, and it has never been rebuilt. Kilpatrick, convicted in November 1966 in Reno County District Court of forcible rape and first degree murder, was sentenced to death for the slaying of a young girl. Hamilton was sentenced in July 1971, also in Reno County District Court for murder and aggravated battery. Hamilton's sentence was modified by the court to a life prison sentence in September 1973. Kilpatrick's death sentence was modified to a life term last October—the last person carrying a death sentence in this state. Both Kilpatrick- and Hamilton now are serving their life terms at Lansing. Gardem City Telegram 15c • Copy GARDEN CITY, KANSAS WEDNESDAY, JUNE 23, 1976 Vol.47 22 Pages—Two Sections -No. 197 News In Brief Kansas Jails Heavy Rains Pelt Kansas Sections TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — An interim |i legislative committee has heard wit- lijji nesses urge development of regional ; : | corrections facilities instead of regional ;•:•: jails or expanding present penal in- :$ stitutions. $ Several of those appearing Tuesday •:•: said ti\e state would better spend its jij: money by creating the regional correc- jij: tions facilities, work release programs jjjj and training, than by pumping millions jjjj more into existing prison facilities.. •:•; The interim committee on federal and jjjj state affairs is considering a proposal to jjj: create a system of regional jails in Kan- jjj; sas to supplement county and city jails jjj now criticized as inadequate. jjj One witness who supported the concept ;j; of regional jails was Simon Roth, Ellis ;j; County attorney. Ellis County already jjj has built a regional facility, and Roth jjj said it needs assistance in supporting it. jjj He said a new requirement that jjj prisoners have 24-hour surveillance is jj; costing Ellis County $60,000 for additional jj jailers. v jj The panel takes a look at the state's jj open meetings law today. jj 'Collective Action' \ NEW YORK (AP) — Democratic I presidential candidate Jimmy Carter j said today the United States must j abandon what he called its "Lone j Ranger" foreign policy and organize free j nations to share responsibility for "a just j and stable world order." ! Carter, the Democrats' probable ! nominee, called for collective action by the world's democracies in "creative alliances" to help stabilize world prices, ease military tensions and combat hunger and poverty. Carter painted his concept of "creative alliances" in broad stroke's, giving few specific details. He said it is time to form a partnership ' between North America, Western Europe and Japan, and that there is a need for increased unity and consultation with Israel, Australia, New Zealand and other democratic societies. Honor Code ; WASHINGTON (AP) — A first-year ; cadet at West Point can be charged with j an honor code violation if he buys a slice j of pizza after hours while wearing an : : athletic sweatsuit, a congressman says. i On the other hand, if he's attired in his j! cadet uniform and buys the pizza after jj hours, he has simply broken a regulation j: punishable by a little extra drill. ji Rep. Thomas Downey, D.-N.Y., told the j; Senate Armed Services subcommittee j Tuesday that the difference is that if a | cadet dresses in the sweatsuit, without |j: any insignia to identify him as a plebe, he :j: is presumed to be attempting to disguise | his identity. An "intent to deceive" is an jji honor code violation. ;•: Downey provided this example of what jj: he said was the unfairness of the West § Point honor code system as the sub| committee held its second day of | hearings the codes of all of the service •:•: academies. Garden Suss If it weren't for the spokes, Gus Garden says, many big wheels wouldn't be rolling along as fast as they are. TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) Heavy rain pelted sections of central and eastern Kansas today, and the National Weather Service said thunderstorms would continue for a couple more days. The weather service said more than 2V 2 inches of rain fell at Barnard in north- central Kansas and 2 inches at Marysville in the northeast during the 24-hour period ended at 7 a.m. today. An inch and a half or more of rain fell during the same period at Moran, Hunter and Glasco. Junction City • and Chanute both reported more than l'/4 inches. The weather service said l'/ 4 inches of rain fell at Overland Park in a one- hour/period this morning. The weather, service said the storms formed in the northwest corner of Kansas - about midnight and developed through central and eastern parts of the state. The weather service said a cold front over the Rocky Mountains would trigger more thunderstorms today and tonight as it clashes with humid air over Kansas. ItavM RICHARD MkCOWAN, right, accused slayer of Lcoti Police Chief Carl Simons was moved from Scott County jail to Wichita County ' Court Tuesday for preliminary hearing. McCowan was bound over to district court, and returned to the Scott County facility where he remains in lieu of $100,000 bond. As McCowan leaves Scott City en route to Leoti, he is assisted into the patrol car by Wichita County Deputy Sheriff Robert Isaac Wlnstead. Fatal Leoti Shooting Details Disclosed ,By KATHI LOPER LEOTI—Details of the shooting of Leoti Police Chief .Carl, Simons;were- disclosed for'the first time Tuesday at the preliminary hearing for his accused slayer, Richard McCowan. McCowan's statement following his arrest in Eads, Colo., was read in court by Lanny Grossland, special agent for the Kansas Bureau of Investigation. McCowan, 31, is charged with first degree murder in the shooting of Simons, who stopped McCowan a mile north of Leoti on May 25 to serve a warrant for parole violation. Simons' body was., discovered in a weed-filled ditch across the highway from his patrol car. McCowan was apprehended a few hours later near Eads. In the statement made to -Grossland, McCowan said he had just returned to Leoti from California where he had picked up his daughter, and was enroute to telephone his parole officer to explain why he had not met with him the week before. Simons stopped McCowan a' mile north of ,Leoti, drew his weapon, and ordered )iim out of the ; , ca_r, McCowan' said. McCowan.said he protested that a drawn weapon was not necessary, and that Simons proceeded to cock his service revolver and put the gun in McCowan's back. At one time, McCowan's statement said, the officer struck him on the shoulder with what he believed to be the service revolver. Simons then handcuffed Siren Gripe Sparks Commission Debate McCowan, the statement read, and began talking to someone on the patrol car's mobile telephone.,,.At..this point, McCowan said, he went to his car to quiet his children, and took a gun he had there back to the patrol car. He said he aimed the gun at Simons, and ordered him to unlock the handcuffs so that he, McCowan, could have his hands free to telephone his parole officer. A scuffle ensued, and Simons fell or was knocked to the ground. ''I guess I shot him after he fell . . . things were kind of hazy ... I didn't trial. McCowan was returned to Scott County Jail where he is being held in lieu of $100,000 bond. A complaint over a noisy fire siren mushroomed into a debate over whether Garden City needs a fulltime fire department at this morning's city commission. Raymond M. Tarpley, 601 Hamline, told commissioners the siren is only 45 feet from his mother's bedroom. He said his mother is ill and only recently returned from the hospital. City Manager Deane Wiley explained the sirens are sounded to alert fire department volunteers. He said the eight sirens located strategically around the city also alert the community that 20 to 22 volunteers will be heading to the firehouse from all directions. Fire Chief Tommy Thomas said the firemen carry pagers, but sometimes the batteries run down, and the siren is the only foolproof way of alerting them during daylight hours. "We do need these sirens if we are going to have a volunteer fire department. I am sure if Mr. Tarpley's house were on fire he would want every possible man there," said Thomas. "It's a shame this community of 18,000 has to have a volunteer fire department," responded Tarpley. "We need a full-time paid fire department." "What would that cost us?" Commissioner Tony Jewell asked Wiley. The city manager estimated it would be around $450,000 a year. Last year's budget for the volunteer department was $42,500. Mayor Al Towles noted that a full-time department would require a levy increase of 10 or 12 mills. Tarpley: said all other cities of comparable size have a full- time department. Wiley answered: "Some do, some don't." He said Shawnee in eastern Kansas is the largest 'city in the state with a volunteer department. After the debate, the commission voted 3-1 to move the objectionable siren so that it would be the same distance from all homes in that area. The city will also eliminate the fire siren tone for the duration of Mrs. Tarpley's illness. The siren ajso sounds storm warnings; but this signal will not be eliminated. Jewell voted against the motion because he said he didn't approve of silencing the fire siren, although he agreed moving it was justified. There were only four votes because Commissioner West was absent. African Riots Appear Ended JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) — South Africa's black upheaval appeared today to have ended. Police reported no violence during the night and calm prevailing today in all the black townships around Pretoria and Johannesburg where there were disturbances Tuesday. Brig. P.N. Van Zyl said published reports that six persons were killed Tuesday in the Pretoria township of Mamelodi were "without foundation." The uprising started last Wednesday in the black township of Soweto, south of Johannesburg. The official toll is 140 dead and 1,128 injured, and all but two of the dead and 11 of the injured were black. A breakdown of the casualties resulting from police gunfire and those killed or wounded by the mobs is still being compiled, police said. mean to shoot him," McCowan Purpose of a preliminary saiti in his statement. hearing is to determine a The statement made to KBI crime has been committed agents Grossland and Duane;-and , that there is probable Bell was entered as evidence, cause to hold the defendant for McCowan was bound over to district court for trial after the hearing before Wichita County Judge John E. Ley..McCowan will appear in district court here July 19 and a trial date will be set by District Judge Bert Vance. Also testifying Tuesday was Dr. David L. Pfannenstiel, Leoti physician and Wichita County coroner. He said cause of Simons' death was a gunshot wound to the right upper chest. He said Simons also had a wound to the left forearm. McCowan will not be required to enter a plea until his district court appearance. Weather Sunrl*T6:23 Sun»t«:m Coolrr lonlilht with lowi In the low lo mid Wh. Partly cloudy Thursday wllh hl|hi In Ihr HIM. wind* brcomlnK north- wrutrrly III to 20 mph tonight.- I'rrclpltBllon probability 30 per cent lonlKhl. Hrtc. .51 .05 .21 .09 DixlHcCity Kmporiu GAKDEN CITY (ioodlund mildly Kussi'll Salma Topcku Wichltu Max 93 86 B7 91 92 90 89 88 86 . Mln. 70 62 71 59 64 70 09 68 72 Southwest Pioneer, Art Bent/ey, Dies DIGHTON - Long-time Southwest Kansas resident, Arthur Randall Bentley, 92, died Tuesday at Lane County Hospital, Dighton. Mr. Bentley was noted for his extensive knowledge of antique firearms and old-west traditions. In 1974, he served as parade marshal during Beef Empire Days in Garden City. He was born Jan. 1, 1884, in Franklin County, Neb. He moved lo Kansas in 1893 and was a farmer and rancher until his retirement in 1950. He married Louise Jen- ningson, June 4, 1912, at Crystal Springs, Miss. In Dighton, he was a member of the Gun Club, Dighton Rotary and the First Christian Church. Survivors include a son, Rod, Shields, three daughters, Mrs. Reva Lewis, Pueblo, Colo., Mrs. Leora Bliss, Albuquerque, N.M., Mrs. Ada Seymore, Manhattan; a brother, Ross, Shields, 17 grandchildren, and five great- grandchildren. Funeral will be 10 a.m. Thursday at the church, the Rev. Joe Tempfer officiating. Burial will be in Dighton Memorial Cemetery. Friends may call until 9 p.m. Wednesday at Niles- Zenor Funeral Home, Dighton. Family suggests memorials to the Christian Church in care of the funeral home. Pulls Gun on Sheriff; Recaptured Syracuse Man Gains Freedom, 7 New Charges SYRACUSE—A Syracuse man who gained several hours of freedom by pulling a gun on the Seward, Neb., sheriff also gained a list of seven new charges against him because of the incident. Robert E. Thomeczek, 32, Syracuse, was being held in Seward County (Neb.) jail on felony charges of possessing a stolen vehicle, possession of a concealed weapon and possession of a controlled substance (amphetamines) when he made his escape from custody Tuesday morning. New charges against Thomeczek this morning include auto theft, kidnaping, possession of a concealed weapon, possession of a firearm by a fugitive, assault with intent to rob, robbery and assault of a law enforcement officer. Seward County Sheriff Marvin Pollock gave The Telegram this account of what happened Tuesday morning: Thomeczek had complained of a toothache, and was taken to a Seward dentist Monday morning by Jaw enforcement officers. The dentist found an infected tooth, and asked that the prisoner be brought back to his office the next morning for treatment. Pollock said he ac- companied Thomeczek to the dentist's office about 9 a.m. Tuesday, but as the patrol car pulled up in front of the office, Thomecek ordered the sheriff to keep going. "I couldn't figure out what he meant. I mean, I thought we were already there. Then I turned to look at him and he had a gun pointed at my head," Pollock said. Thomeczek ordered the sheriff to drive outside of the town, where he tied up the officer and dumped him in a small ravine, Pollock said. Thomeczek then allegedly stole the sheriff's billfold, checkbook and patrol car. Pollock said he managed to free himself a few moments later and make it to the road, where he flagged down a motorist, got a ride into town, and reported the incident. Thomeczek was recaptured by two criminal investigators from the Nebraska State Patrol in Lincoln about 12:30 p.m. No shots were fired. "In fact," Pollock said, "he was pretty nice about everything. I'm just glad it wasn't my deputy that took him to the dentist—those two don't get along at all." Pollock's office and the Seward County Attorney are investigating the source of the .38 caliber derringer that 'Thomeczek used to make his getaway. They believe it must have been smuggled into the jail by someone, either a visitor or prisoners who are allowed out of the jail during the day tor work detail. Teletype bulletins were issued throughout Southwest Kansas, following his escape advising lawmen to watch for Thomeczek. The bulletins were canceled a short time after they were issued. Did Pollock attempt to stop Thomeczek's escape? "I sure didn't. I thought of a number of things I could have done, but 1 guess I did the right thing by not doing anything. At least we got everything back — including the prisoner — and no one was hurt. That's the important thing." The Syracuse man has been a prisoner in Seward since March 10, the sheriff said, when he was returned from Oklahoma alter "jumping bond" on the original charges. Those charges were filed against Thomeczek last year, and he was scheduled to face preliminary hearing on them next month. Courteous Service Is My Goal. Philip C Vieux (or County Attorney. Haid (or by P C. Vieux -Adv.

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