4 killed, 1 injured in Kansas plane crash

KANSAS CITY, Mo.

4 killed, 1 injured in small plane crash in Kansas

A small airplane that crashed in southeast Kansas on Friday was carrying five people with connections to Oral Roberts University to a Christian youth rally in Iowa. The Kansas Highway Patrol reported Saturday that three of the passengers died at the scene, one died in hospital and one was badly injured. The fatalities were identified Saturday as Luke Sheets, 23, of Ephraim, Wis., who was flying the plane; Austin Anderson, 27, of Ringwood, Okla.; Garrett Coble, 29, of Tulsa, Okla.; and Stephen Luth, 22, of Muscatine, Iowa. Hanna Luce, 22, of Garden Valley, Texas, was critically injured and admitted to the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, Kan. Luce, a recent graduate, is the daughter of Oral Roberts trustee Ron Luce, founder of Teen Mania Ministries, which was sponsoring this weekend's Acquire the Fire rally in Council Bluffs, Iowa. The National Transportation Safety Board said the twin-engine Cessna 401 went down around 4:30 p.m. Friday.

BOSTON

3 U.S. students killed in New Zealand crash

Boston University is mourning the deaths of three of its students in a minivan crash in New Zealand. At least five other students were injured in the Saturday morning accident, which police say happened near the North Island vacation town of Taupo when the van drifted to the side of the road and then rolled over. Study abroad program executive director Bernd Widdig said the university is helping parents who are traveling to New Zealand. The university said those killed in the accident were Daniela Lekhno, of Manalapan, N.J.; Austin Brashears, of Huntington Beach, Calif.; and Roch Jauberty, whose parents live in Paris. The New Zealand program involves courses at the University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico

Jehovah's Witnesses win battle in court

A U.S. court has ordered that all gated communities in Puerto Rico find a way to grant access to Jehovah's Witnesses so they can proselytize. Communities with guards already had to let them in. Now those without guards manning gates must provide access by Tuesday. The American Civil Liberties Union said in a statement late Friday that the ruling benefits all religious, political and social groups. In Puerto Rico, streets inside gated communities are considered public thoroughfares. The Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses in Puerto Rico estimates that its members have been barred from 587 gated communities in 57 municipalities. They say that about half of the island's gated communities have guards. Puerto Rico has 318 Jehovah's Witnesses congregations, with a total of about 25,000 members.

CARACAS, Venezuela

Crossword plot claim draws ridicule

Venezuelan intelligence agents have questioned the author of a newspaper crossword puzzle, and even some supporters of the government are ridiculing allegations the words he chose might be coded calls for a plot to kill the elder brother of President Hugo Chavez. State TV presenter Miguel Perez Pirela raised the accusation, pointing out that Wednesday's crossword puzzle in the newspaper Ultimas Noticias contained the words "ASESINEN," or kill, along with the name of Chavez's brother, "ADAN." Neptali Segovia, an English teacher who prepares crossword puzzles for the newspaper, said it's ridiculous to think there was a hidden code in the puzzle. Nestor Francia, a writer who favors Chavez's government, criticized the allegation, asking in an article what sort of "cheap spy movie" would tout such a theory.

Times wires

4 killed, 1 injured in Kansas plane crash 05/12/12 [Last modified: Saturday, May 12, 2012 11:39pm]

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