MIAMI, Okla. — A mental competency hearing is set for today for an Illinois man accused of planning to firebomb dozens of churches in Miami with Molotov cocktails. The hearing is scheduled for U.S. District Court in Tulsa. Gregory Weiler II, of Elk Grove Village, Ill., allegedly planned to destroy 48 churches with attacks from a motel he was staying in near Interstate 44. Weiler’s public defender says his client has been hospitalized numerous times in the past five years for mental health issues that include depression and bipolar disorder. A federal grand jury indictment charges Weiler with one count of possessing an unregistered, destructive device, which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison upon conviction.
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Contaminated mine tailings could be used on west bypass
About 500 acres of former mining land at Wildwood Ranch have been reclaimed by contractors working for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. More than 1 million cubic yards of contaminated mine tailings in the form of chat and waste rock have been consolidated in a surface repository that someday could be part of the roadbed for a limited-access highway that transportation planners hope to build on the west side of Joplin.
Joplin City Council to hear baseball plan details
Proposed redevelopment plans for Joe Becker Stadium will be discussed with the Joplin City Council in a work session at the end of its regular meeting tonight. The WLD Suarez partnership has obtained a franchise of the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball that succeeds the El Paso (Texas) Diablos.
Money to area lawmakers slows down but doesn’t stop
With the Legislature back in session, the flow of campaign cash to local candidates has slowed. But in this election year, the money did not completely stop. All members of the local delegation to the Missouri General Assembly are on the ballot this year, but only two lawmakers are facing opposition.
VIDEO: Cancer patient walks down aisle in wedding thrown by friends
A year ago, Schandera Jordan was diagnosed with a rare form cervical cancer. And months after a radical hysterectomy, doctors confirmed the worst: The cancer had spread to her lungs and pancreas.
SLIDE SHOW: Teen with cystic fibrosis finds widespread support
When the Nevada Show Choir performs its spring show on stage, it’s impossible to pick out the student with cystic fibrosis because there are no outward clues.
Gabby Gire, 18, is just another performer. She sings, she dances, she smiles for the audience.
Enrollment open for Joplin summer school
Enrollment is now open for the Joplin school district’s summer school session, which will run Wednesday, June 4, though Tuesday, July 1.
Funding shortfall could hinder public transportation in Southeast Kansas
For the past two years, Pittsburg State University sophomore Travis Cook has been using public transportation to get to and from his classes. He began using the bus his freshman year, when he didn’t have a vehicle to drive even to the grocery store — which is said to be the case for many who use the service.
Bruner denied change of venue for murder trial
Circuit Judge Gayle Crane has denied a change of venue for a defendant charged with fatally shooting an assistant football coach at Missouri Southern State University. The attorney for Jeffrey Bruner claimed pretrial publicity as the reason for seeking a change of venue in Jasper County Circuit Court.
Russell family sues city, Joplin police
Family members of a teenage girl whose suicide a year ago brought them into conflict with police officers and emergency medical technicians are suing the city and the Joplin Police Department. Kevin and Julissa Russell and their son, Brant Russell, are the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed in Jasper County Circuit Court. The action filed on the Russells’ behalf by Kansas City attorney Andrew Protzman names the city, the Police Department and Officers Austin Wolf and Tyler Christensen as defendants.
Kansas Regents stick with social media policy
After directing a committee to study a controversial social media policy and make recommended changes, the Kansas Board of Regents appears to not be changing the policy at all. It’s left some in academia baffled by why it appointed the work group in the first place.
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