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Tag: Kansas

FBI Arrests Suspected Serial Killer Accused of Fatally Shooting 6 People

Perez Reed, 25. Photo: St. Louis County Prosecutor’s Office

By Steve Neavling

The FBI on Monday arrested a suspected serial killer who may have killed six people and wounded two others in Missouri and Kansas. 

Agents arrested Perez Reed, 25, at a bus station on Friday, The Kansas City Star reports.

According to a special agent’s affidavit, Reed was wanted for shootings that began Sept. 12 in St. Louis County. A .40 caliber Smith & Wesson was used in each shooting, and shell casings matched the same gun. 

During his arrest, Reed was in possession of that handgun, according to the affidavit.  

On Monday, Reed was charged with the murders of two people, and additional charges are pending. 

U.S. Attorney Sayler Fleming said more than half a dozen of law enforcement agencies were involved in a “relentless investigation of these hideous and violent crimes.”

Kansas City Man Who Assaulted ATF Agent Was Sentenced to 15 in Prison

By Steve Neavling

A Kansas City man was sentenced to 15 years in prison for assaulting an ATF agent during an undercover operation in February. 

Nicholas Newman pleaded guilty in May 2021 to one count of forcible assault on a federal officer using a dangerous weapon and one count of using, carrying, possessing and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a violence crime. 

In February, Newman met two undercover ATF agents to sell them a gun in a parking lot in Kansas City. Newman handed the gun to one of the agent’s in the driver’s seat, which she placed on the floorboard. After the agent gave Newman the cash, he tried to grab the gun, and a “violent snuggled ensued,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. 

“Newman physically assaulted her inflicting severe bodily harm,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release. “The second agent, who had been in the rear passenger seat, came around and attempted to subdue Newman from behind. A short time later, ATF surveillance units arrived and instructed Newman to let go of the weapon which he did. He was subsequently taken into custody.”

“Every day our ATF agents work to make our communities safer by trying to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals,” Acting U.S. Attorney Duston Slinkard said. “In doing so, they often put themselves in harm’s way. Thanks to the bravery and quick action of these agents no lives were lost in an incident which could have resulted in tragedy.”

TSA Official Blows Whistle on Agency’s Failures to Protect Employees, Travelers

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A senior TSA official in Kansas filed a complaint against the agency, saying it failed to provide adequate training and protective gear to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus to airport employees and travelers.

The TSA reports that 706 of its employees tested positive for COVID-19, and five have died.

Jay Brainard, the top TSA official in Kansas, said supervisors were prevented from providing screeners with stockpiled N95 masks in March, when it was difficult to buy the respirators.

“I have no doubt whatsoever that our people became Typhoid Marys and contributed to the spread of that virus because TSA senior leadership did not make sure (screeners) were adequately protected,” Brainard told The Associated Press.

Brainard’s complaint prompted the Office of Special Counsel to order Homeland Security to investigate.

In a statement, the TSA insisted if followed CDC guidelines in protecting employees.

Brainard countered that the TSA failed to notify screeners that they should change gloves after every pat-down.

DEA Agent Among Victims of Airplane Crash in Kansas on New Year’s Eve

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A DEA special agent was among two people killed when a single-engine airplane crashed almost immediately after takeoff at Johnson County Executive Airport in Kansas on New Year’s Eve.

The Kansas Highway Patrol identified the victims as DEA Special Agent Jonathan J. Vannatta, 48 of Maumelle, Ark., and Darcy L. Matthews, 43, of Belton, Texas. Vannatta was the pilot, investigators said.

A DEA spokesperson confirmed that Vannatta worked with the DEA but was not on assignment, according to 41 Action News.

Investigators said they are still trying to determine what caused the accident. A preliminary report is expected within two to three weeks.

Early accounts suggest the plane veered into trees and crashed east of the runway before catching fire.

Former ICE Agent Pleads Guilty to Impersonating Immigration Official to Free Man from Jail

Andrew J. Pleviak

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

A former ICE agent accused of trying to help an inmate escape from a Kansas jail by impersonating an immigration officer has pleaded guilty.

Andrew J. Pleviak, 42, is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 20 after pleading guilty in Kingman County District Court on Wednesday to making false information and attempted aiding escape to another in custody.

Pleviak also was indicted by a grand jury last week on one count of false impersonation of a federal officer, prosecutors said in a news release.

Pleviak falsely claimed he was an ICE supervisor in a failed attempt to get jail officials to release Juan Diego Tapia-Alfaro, who was arrested Aug. 2 for allegedly obtaining a driver’s license fraudulently.

Pleviak faces up to three years in federal prison on the additional charge.

Pro-Trump Militiamen on Trial in Plot to Blow Up Muslims in Kansas Apartment

Curtis Allen (left), Gavin Wright (center) and Patrick Stein (right).

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Patrick Stein, a right-wing militia member who thought Trump was “the Man” and Muslims were “cockroaches” that needed to be exterminated, met what he thought was a weapons dealer in a remote field in western Kansas.

“I’m sick of seeing these motherfuckers coming into this country,” Stein told the man, referring to Muslim refugees, Huffington post reports. “They’re here for one reason and one reason only.”

It was about a month before Donald Trump was elected president, and Stein had no idea he was actually meeting with an undercover FBI agent.

A few days later, the FBI arrested Stein, who was charged with a litany of federal offenses, including plotting to kill Somali refugees who lived in an apartment complex in nearby Garden City.

Since then, 18 months have passed, and Stein and his allege co-conspirators Gavin Wright and Curtis Allen are on the third week of a trial in Wichita.

While Stein met with the undercover agent in search of a weapon manufacturer, the co-conspirators did not demonstrate they were serious about the plot, their defense attorneys said.

3 Suspects Injured in Shootout with Police, FBI Face Aggravated Assault Charges

Jason Trevillion, 32, Ernest Jones, 27, and Arthur Mitchell, 25, have been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against a police officer.

Jason Trevillion, 32, Ernest Jones, 27, and Arthur Mitchell, 25, have been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against a police officer.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A shootout between three man and the FBI and Kansas City police officers has prompted charges against the wounded suspects.

The men, Jason Trevillion, 32, Ernest Jones, 27, and Arthur Mitchell, 25, have been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against a police officer, The Kansas City Star reports

Gunfire broke out after several members of the FBI’s Violent Crimes Task Force tried to make a traffic stop in Kansas City, Kansas, on Nov. 6.

All three suspects sustained non-life-threatening injuries, and no police officer was injured.

Authorities have yet to say what prompted the stop and how many officers were involved.

FBI Investigating Shooting of Indian Men in Kansas As Federal Hate Crime

Shooting suspect Adam Purinton.

Shooting suspect Adam Purinton.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI said it’s now investigating a Kansas shooting as a hate crime after a Indian man was killed and another injured at a Kansas bar, the bureau said Tuesday.

Witnesses said the accused gunman shot the men after telling them to “get out of my country.”

Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, died in the attack. Alok Madasani, 32, was released from the hospital a day after last week’s attack.

Adam W. Purinton, 51, has been charged in the shooting in Olathe, about 20 miles southwest of Kansas City. It appears Purinton thought the men were Iranian, according to a 911 call, the Washington Post reports. 

He now faces potential hate crime charges by the feds.

“Based upon the initial investigative activity, the FBI, in conjunction with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, is investigating this incident as a hate crime,” an FBI spokeswoman said in a statement. “The FBI will continue to work jointly with Olathe Police Department and our state and local partners regarding this ongoing investigation.”