Deputies stop park vandalism suspects

Wyandotte County Sheriff’s deputies have stopped park vandalism suspects at City Park, 26th and Park Drive.

According to a news release from the Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office, deputies received a tip that an individual was “tagging” the restrooms at City Park at about 3 p.m. Thursday, April 28.

Deputies responded and detained several individuals attempting to leave the area, according to the news release.

Information from the tipster led to the identification of the suspect and an arrest, the sheriff’s spokesman stated in the release.

“With the assistance of the public, we were able to actively address an ongoing vandalism problem in our area park facilities,” the spokesman stated in the release. “As we reach peak season for park usage, let’s continue to report illegal activities in our community parks.”

The Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office will continue its enforcement efforts in and around community parks, the spokesman stated.

Anyone with additional information regarding this investigation may contact 911 or the Crime Stoppers TIPS hotline at 816-474-TIPS, the spokesman stated. All tips remain anonymous and may qualify for a cash reward.

Officials assessing damage from tornado that hit Wichita, Andover

Despite extensive damage to several neighborhoods, authorities say only four people were injured in Friday night’s storm.

The Andover YMCA was heavily damaged during Friday night’s storm. Employees and members took shelter inside the building when the tornado hit. No one was injured. (Photo from Wichita Police Department)

by Tom Shine, KMUW and Kansas News Service

Wichita — Officials are continuing to assess the damage caused by a tornado Friday night that hit southeast Wichita and Andover.

Andover Fire Chief Chad Russell said Saturday that four people suffered minor injuries in the storm. He said no people remain unaccounted for.

More than 200 emergency responders from 30 agencies were continuing to search through the debris as a cautionary move.

Andover Fire Department officials say about 1,000 buildings and homes were damaged in Sedgwick and Butler counties. It said the tornado caused damage along a six-mile path.

Russell said some neighborhoods in Andover were “damaged enough that houses were completely blown down” and cited areas that suffered “very bad damage.”

Among the buildings hit was the Andover YMCA, near Kellogg and Andover Road. YMCA officials said the building “suffered significant damage” from the storm.

It said employees and members inside the building took shelter as the tornado approached. No one was injured.

The Andover YMCA remains closed until further notice.

Prairie Creek Elementary School, which is just south of the YMCA, also was damaged by the tornado. District officials planned to assess the damage Saturday.

Andover’s City Hall, near Central and Andover Road, also suffered damage.

Officials set up an emergency shelter at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church in Andover. Russell said no one used the shelter Friday night.

Ironically, St. Vincent was destroyed in the April 1991 tornado that struck Andover. That storm killed 21 people in Wichita and Andover.

The Kansas Department of Transportation said parts of U.S. 54-400 remain closed between 159th Street to Santa Fe Lake Road. Crews are trying to clear the road of downed power lines.

More than 15,000 people were without power after the storm Friday night. Westar said that power had been restored to all but 1,200 customers.

Russell, the fire chief, asked people to continue to avoid the area so emergency crews can complete their assessment. He said city officials will let volunteers know when they can help with the clean up.

Officials also said private drones are banned from the area. Authorities are using a plane from the Kansas Highway Patrol and drones from the Andover Police Department to survey the damage.

The United Way of the Plains is coordinating donations for a relief fund. People can donate at

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KC Current on the road with season opener tonight at Portland

After finishing atop the Central division in the Challenge Cup group phase, the Kansas City Current opens the regular season Saturday, April 30 at 5 p.m. against the Portland Thorns at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon.

The match will broadcast live exclusively on Twitch.

Kansas City played its first match in the NWSL at Portland April 9, 2021. Kansas City NWSL, scored its first goal in the 60th minute of the match, but eventually fell 2-1. The team finished last in the Western Division of the Challenge Cup and the regular season.

2022 brings optimism and expectations for Kansas City. The team rebranded as the Current, added star players and a new coaching staff led by head coach Matt Potter, who has guided his team to five results in the first six matches (four wins, one draw) of the Challenge Cup.

New uniforms debut

With the regular season kicking off, the Current will appear in the new “Electric” kit in Saturday’s match.

The team’s secondary jersey features bursts of teal accents rising along the sides of the jersey, representing world-class players who are carving a new path driven by energy and optimism.

Accents of Heartland Red, including the iconic NIKE Swoosh and piping along the side and neck, symbolize the Current’s connection to the community, passion for the sport, and commitment to one another.

Fans are able to purchase the jersey online or at Current home matches, beginning with the Challenge Cup semifinal on May 4.

Most recent meeting with Portland

Kansas City recorded its fifth straight unbeaten game at home when these teams battled to a 0-0 draw October 10, 2021. Both sides had their chances to score.

Kansas City forward Kristen Hamilton found the back of the net in the first half, but a foul call just before negated the score.

Portland’s best chance came when the Thorns were awarded a penalty kick in the second half. Canadian forward Christine Sinclair missed the shot wide, giving A.D. Franch her second clean sheet with KC.

Players to watch

Kansas City Current: Forward Elyse Bennett – Kansas City’s first pick (seventh overall) in the 2022 NWSL Draft, has been a strong presence for the Current throughout the preseason and Challenge Cup. The rookie forward had more assists than any other player in the Challenge Cup, setting up four crucial Current scores over six games.

Portland Thorns: Forward Christine Sinclair – One of three players who has played for the same team in every NWSL season, Sinclair continues to be one of the leaders for the Thorns. Her 54 career goals ranks third in NWSL history, and she has 10 more playoff starts than any other player.

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