The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on May 3, 1997 · Page 11
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 11

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Saturday, May 3, 1997
Page 11
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SATURDAY MAY 3, 1997 THE SALINA JOURNAL BRIEFLY Great Plains VIEWPOINTS / B2 MONEY / B4 RELIGION / B6 T AGRICULTURE LAWSUITS BRACE Money-laundering conviction overturned NEW ORLEANS — A Kansas minister's money-laundering conviction has been overturned by a federal appeals court, which ruled that the defendant was entrapped by federal undercover agents. •"Well, thank you," the Rev. David Brace said when informed of the decision Thursday night. Brace had been sentenced to 14 Vt years in prison after a federal jury found him guilty of four counts of money laundering. A 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel declared that Brace, pastor of the debt-ridden Faith Metro Church in Wichita, had been entrapped by undercover agents posing as drug traffickers into laundering $10 million in cocaine profits. '.'When we ask the question of what Brace would have done if he had never met the undercover agents, we cannot answer 'launder money,' " the opinion said. Marquette man dies after being run over NEWTON — A road worker died after he was run over by heavy machinery just outside this south-central Kansas town, authorities said. Eric Wayne Preston, 20, Marquette, was killed when he was run over by an earth-mover, the Harvey County Sheriffs Office said Friday. Preston, an employee of Malm Construction Co. of Lindsborg, was injured Thursday afternoon on U,S. 50 northeast of Newton and died a short time later at New- ton.Medical Center, Moffitt said. A three-mile stretch of U.S. 50 has been closed recently for construction in the area where the man was killed. •Nursing home aides face criminal charges TOPEKA — Attorney General Carla Stovall said Friday criminal charges have been filed against two certified nurse's aides for alleged mistreatment of Medicaid patients in nursing homes in Emporia and Kansas City, Kan. Susan D. Garcia, Madison, is accused of taking advantage of a dependent adult by helping him write three checks to her, totaling $225, and then cashing them and keeping the money. Shirley I. Whitaker, Kansas City, Kan., is charged with bat- teryjbr allegedly striking a patient in her care in June 1996. s- Salina is host to civil disturbance training State corrections, military and lojjal police personnel are partici- pajihg this weekend in special crjfil disturbance training at the Kjm£as Regional Training Insti- tule'in Salina. IThe Adjutant General's Depart- mgnt said Friday the training wfliiUi include state Department of Corrections officers, members ofrthje Kansas Army and Air Na- ticttjal Guard and the Kansas City, K$n;i Police Department, Kansas City, Kan., police and the 35tlh( Division's provost marshal's offipe are providing the instruction arid monitoring the exercise. Military units represented are th£ &5th Military Police Company oFTopeka and Kansas City, secu- riiyjpolice from the 190th Air Refueling Wing of Topeka and the 183th Bomb Wing of Wichita, and 2n,d 'Battalion of the 137th In- fafjtry unit in Kansas City. Neighbor gets jail term fof peeping-tom act QLATHE — A man who crawled into his neighbor's attic sahje could peek at her while she sl£pt was sentenced to 30 days in jajl and 18 months probation. jylatthew David Staab, 24, pleaded guilty to making a hole be- twe?n the attic of his apartment aiifythe apartment next door so th#t he could crawl back and forth in the Shawnee complex. The woman said she was terrified when she discovered him. Slpab apologized, saying he was diflnk. ; From Staff and Wire Reports Charges fly over cost of feed for cattle Former elevator manager faces criminal charges in billings; civil lawsuits filed By LINDA MOWERY-DENNING The Salina Journal OAKLEY — The former manager of an Oakley grain elevator once owned by the Salina-based Smoot Grain Co. has been charged in Logan County with more than 160 felony counts of billing customers for nonexistent livestock feed and cashing checks without authorization from his employer. In a related matter, on Thursday, attorneys who represent two local farmers in high-dollar civil cases against the elevator's current owner, Collingwood Grain, filed a motion in Logan County District Court to have the case certified as class action. If the motion is granted, the case would be open to "all persons or businesses who have purchased grain or feed products from the grain elevator located at South Highway 83 during the inclusive time period of Jan. 1,1990, to the present." All cases are the result of a complicated series of events involving aborted calves, a 300-pound truck driver and about three dozen farmers and ranchers. In addition to the Logan County cases, there is a similar civil suit in Gove County. Each file is thicker than an old Sears Roebuck catalog and includes charges, countercharges, claims and counterclaims filed by almost a half-dozen attorneys representing the former manager, the Hutchinson-based Collingwood and others. At this point, none of those attorneys would comment on the merits of their cases. Nor would Logan County Attorney Dou- glas Spencer talk about the criminal charges. However, Thomas Bath, an Overland Park attorney who represents Terry Schippers, former manager of the Oakley elevator, said Friday his client cooperated with investigators — the Kansas Bureau of Investigation entered the case early this year — "and he plans to vigorously defend himself against all charges." Schippers, who is free on $15,000 bond, pleaded not guilty in April. A motion to dismiss the charges against him will be heard Aug. 7 in Logan County. He faces 153 counts of making false writings, seven counts of forgery, two counts of felony theft and five counts of misdemeanor theft. Heavy on the scales According to the criminal complaint: Schippers, who managed the elevator for Collingwood from the fall of 1994 to the spring of 1995, but worked at the business longer, added tens of thousands of pounds of livestock feed to the scale tickets of customers between January 1994 and February 1995. Individual amounts ranged from as little as 10 pounds to as much as 2,900 pounds. A civil complaint filed by the Zerr family of Oakley claims the extra weight was figured in two ways: it was simply added to the scale ticket before farmers received a monthly statement of their charges — without ever seeing the scale tickets — or it was added by leaving the truck driver in the cab as the load passed over the scale. The driver weighed about 300 pounds, according to the suit. In a letter written about a year ago and included in the court files, Collingwood president Lowell Downey told customers: See CATTLE, Page B4 Tomorrow's Headlines 825-6OOO Category 6006 (Call alter 7:30 p.m.) Hooded with help Former Grand Forks resident overwhelmed by generosity in Kansas By MIKE CORN The Hays Daily News DAMAR — When Debbie Pfannenstiel returned to the Damar Township Hall Wednesday night, tears came to her eyes. Inside, about 45 people were working sorting items that had been donated to help flood victims in. North Dakota. There was no time to waste, however, as the wealth of goods had to be sorted, boxed and readied for shipment. Pfannenstiel, a former Grand Forks, N.D., resident, said that considering the short notice, the response was phenomenal. While it's hard to say for sure, Pfannenstiel said she and her husband, Linus, estimate that more than $11,000 in merchandise was donated. More than $2,000 in cash also was contributed and used to buy supplies that will be needed by residents of the flood-ravaged area. "It was a little of everything," she said: But the most surprising donation, Pfannenstiel said, came from someone who dropped off an anonymous contribution in Hays. That donation, wrapped in black plastic trash bags, contained more than 15 handmade quilts. Another 20 smaller quilts also were in the bags. Donations for the flood victims came from nine area communities and 13 schools. The relief drive started last week and ended Wednesday, when the goods were collected. In less than a week, the donations, filled dozens of large boxes. But it was the spirit behind the drive that struck Pfannenstiel the most. On Wednesday, as the collection was scheduled to end, she traveled to Hays to start picking up the items. When she returned to Damar, she didn't know what to expect at the township hall. "I was just in tears when I walked in to the hall," she said. "There were 45 people who were here sorting things. "It was just overwhelming, the spirit, the volunteers in this small community. I was overwhelmed. I never dreamed we would have that many people." The volunteers ranged from age 5 to 86. "It makes you feel good," she said. CHARLIE RIEDEL / The Hays Daily News In Damar, Debbie Pfannenstiel labels boxes of food donated for flood victims In North Dakota, where she used to live. All the donated items have been sorted, boxed and labeled. Next the boxes will be put on shipping pallets, covered with shrink wrap and loaded onto a truck for shipment to Fargo, N.D. Consolidated Freightways is expected to drop off a trailer in Damar today and pick it up Monday. Once the truck arrives in Fargo, its contents will be distributed where they are needed. "This is all new stuff and it's not perishable," she said. Donations include everything from food, Band-Aids, Advil, diapers and baby formula to toilet paper, cups, paper plates and towels and sheets. The quilts were the biggest surprise. "Someone was extremely generous," Pfannenstiel said. She doesn't have any idea who might have donated them. T GREAT PLAINS Stained glass catches tourists for Concordia Colorful glass can be found in homes, businesses, all eight Cloud County towns CONCORDIA — The dazzling colors of Concordia's "beacon of light" seem subdued this cloudy weekday afternoon. The beacon — a rose win- ^ dow that overlooks the community from the Nazareth Convent — symbolizes the treasures often hidden or taken for granted in towns and counties across rural Kansas. It also stands as a lesson to communities interested in making the most of what they have: you don't always have to be the best, you only have to be the first. Since March 1994, through action of the Kansas Legislature, Cloud County has been the state's Stained Glass Capital — not because it necessarily has more stained glass than other places, but because local supporters needed a hook to pull visitors to north-central Kansas. It was during a meeting on tourism in the early 1990s that a group of Cloud County residents settled on the stained-glass LINDA MOWERY- DENNING The Salina Juurnal idea. Members of local Extension units had already laid the groundwork through a partial survey of stained-glass attractions. "Somebody just came up with the idea of capitalizing on the county's stained glass," said Susie Haver, who has been involved in the program from its beginning. "Someone had to plant the seed and from it has grown this wonderful opportunity. The stained glass gets people here and once they're here we can keep them busy for days." Added Carole Sampson, a stained glass promoter and member of the local Chamber of Commerce: "Basically, what we wanted to do was promote north-central Kansas through its arts and products." As part of the early effort, members of the Cloud County Stained Glass Task Force, later the Stained Glass Committee, did a more extensive survey of the county's stained glass. Even they were surprised by what they found — stained glass in churches, in homes, in businesses in all eight of the county's communities of Concordia, Huscher, Glasco, Miltonvale, Clyde, Aurora, Jamestown and St. Joseph. The Concordia home of Haver's parents, for instance, contained stained glass windows above the doors and landings. "It was real beautiful, but we hadn't paid much attention to it," she said. The task force also found a human element to their project. "I was overwhelmed at the number of stained glass artists we have and the people who do it for fun and do it well," Sampson said. Survey information served as the basis for brochures, a self-guided tour and a yearly celebration in March, which has been designated by Cloud County commissioners as Stained Glass Month. This year's event featured a tour of homes, stained glass presentations and other activities. Sampson said the program has generated excitement. As a result, more stained glass is appearing in the community. The new elementary school. Banks. Businesses with stained glass signs in their windows. The stained-glass stepping stones at the historic Brown Grand Theatre in Concordia. "We're just happy when someone puts up a suncatcher because every little bit helps," Haver said. There also have been rescues. In 1992, workers clearing the sites of a motel and airport hangers, damaged by a severe storm that summer, found two stained glass panels. They were both restored and one of the panels was given to the Stained Glass Committee by the late Isabell Blosser as a "roving" piece to enhance awareness of the committee's activities. The other panel is displayed at the front entrance of Mount Joseph retirement community. Haver said the stained-glass project has the added benefit of drawing the county closer together. In 1993, the task force received the "We Kan" award from the Kansas Sampler Foundation for a countywide promotion. "It has improved communications between the communities," Haver said. "It also forced them to search into their history. That's something that if you don't do, pretty soon it's lost and nobody knows about it." More information on Cloud County's stained glass attractions is available from the Concordia Area Chamber of Commerce, (913) 243-4290. SUGGESTIONS? CALL BEN WEARING, DEPUTY EDITOR, AT (913) 823-6363 OR 1-800-827-6363 OR E-MAIL AT

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