WKU Public Radio News

News Team

The award-winning news team at WKU Public Radio consists of Dan Modlin, Kevin Willis, Lisa Autry, and Joe Corcoran.


1:25 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Trial Date Set in Civil Lawsuit Against KSP Trooper

A Kentucky State Police trooper will go on trial in 2015 in a civil lawsuit stemming from a deadly traffic crash. 

Trooper Jonathan Biven was behind the wheel of his cruiser when it crossed the center line and collided with another car on U.S. 31E in Barren County.  A police report cited inattention and distraction as contributing factors. 

The 2011 crash killed the driver of the other car, 33-year-old Nurcan Ceylan.  Prosecutors declined to pursue charges against Biven, but a civil lawsuit was filed by Samuel Parker, a passenger in Ceylan's car.

The Glasgow Daily-Times reports Parker’s complaint alleges negligence that resulted in his permanent injuries.

A judge has set aside March 3-4 of next year of hear the lawsuit.  Trooper Biven is the public affairs officer for the Kentucky State Police post in Bowling Green.

10:29 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Ohio County Power Plant Will Remain Open

D.B. Wilson Generating Station
Credit Big Rivers Electric Corp.

A power plant in western Kentucky set for closure will continue operations, at least for now. 

A spokesman for Big River Electric Corporation told the Messenger-Inquirer that the D.B. Wilson power  plant’s 417-megawatt-capacity will be needed through 2016. 

The Centertown plant employs more than 100 workers. 

Big Rivers initially planned to shutter the plant in February 2015 after losing its two largest customers.

9:18 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Outside Group Launches Immigration-Themed Attack Ads Against Grimes

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes
Credit Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

An outside group supporting Senator Mitch McConnell is spending nearly $1 million over the next week to run ads attacking his opponent on the immigration issue.

While immigration hasn’t been a major topic of focus in the Senate race between McConnell and Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, the ads accuse Grimes of backing legislation that would lead to “citizenship for millions who broke the law.”

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11:52 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Elizabethtown Set To Open First Public Dog Park

It’s a problem facing many dog owners who don’t have a big backyard or live an apartment: finding a place to let dogs spend their energy running without a leash. 

On October 4th in Elizabethtown, the city will open its first dog park at Freeman Lake Park just off Nalls Road.

Current mayor Edna Berger says the idea for a dog park came from the late Elizabethtown Mayor Tim Walker, who died suddenly of a heart attack last year.

The grand opening takes place October 4th and Friends of the Hardin County Animal Shelter will be on hand to promote pet adoptions.

4:07 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Senate Challenger Bevin Seriously Eyeing 2015 Governor's Race

Matt Bevin (left) spoke to a Bowling Green resident during a campaign stop he made earlier this year while running for Senate.
Credit Abbey Oldham

The Republican who challenged Senator Mitch McConnell in this year’s GOP primary tells the Associated Press that he’s strongly considering a run for governor.

Louisville businessman and Tea party activist Matt Bevin won 35 percent of the Republican Senate vote in May, following a campaign in which he portrayed McConnell as too moderate. If Bevin joins the 2015 gubernatorial contest, he’ll enter a G-O-P contest that includes Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and former Louisville Metro Councilman Hal Heiner.

Warren County Republican Party chairman Scott Lasley says he doesn’t think a Republican candidate has to wear the Tea Party label to win the party’s nomination next year.

But the WKU Political Science Professor thinks it will be important for GOP candidates to at least reach out to grassroots organizations ahead of the primary.

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11:20 pm
Sat September 13, 2014

Middle Tennessee Outlasts WKU In 3 OTs

Credit WKU

A 100-year-old rivalry lived up to the billing Saturday night as WKU and Middle Tennessee State battled into a third overtime before the Blue Raiders prevailed 50-47 in Murfreesboro.

The loss drops the Hilltoppers record to 1-2 on the season. 

A 25-yard touchdown pass from MTSU quarterback Austin Grammar to Ed'Marques Batties in the third overtime was the game-winner.

It was the second time in school history WKU went to triple overtime. The only other time it happened was in 1997 against Murray State. 

Toppers' quarterback Brandon Doughty threw for a school record 593 yards in the game, part of a 718-yard output from the WKU offense, also a new school record. 

Next up, WKU travels to Annapolis to face Navy  Sept. 27.

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5:00 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Bayh Not a Candidate for Indiana Governor in 2016

Former Indiana Governor and Senator Evan Bayh says he won't run for another gubernatorial term in 2016.

The pool of high-profile Indiana Democrats running for Governor in 2016 has shrunk by one. Former Governor and Senator Evan Bayh says he won’t seek a return to the office he held from 1989 to 1997.

Bayh is a moderate Democrat who strongly considered a presidential run in 2008, before deciding not to run and endorsing Hillary Clinton’s campaign. He served two terms in the U.S. Senate but didn’t seek re-election in 2010.

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2:11 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Kentucky ACLU Questions KET's Rules on Who is Invited to Participate in Debates

Libertarian candidate David Patterson hasn't been invited to participate in KET's Oct. 13 U.S. Senate debate.
Credit david4senate.com

The Kentucky chapter of the ACLU is asking Kentucky Educational Television to adopt more inclusive rules related to who it invites to appear on its televised debates.

The Courier-Journal reports that the legal director for the Kentucky ACLU sent a letter to KET saying the statewide broadcaster might be running afoul of federal law due to changes it made to it rules regarding debates.

A copy of the rules sent to WKU Public Radio by KET stated that candidates invited to appear at its U.S. Senate debate must have accepted at least $100,000 in contributions for the current election. Another rule says that those invited must have at least 10 points of support in a public opinion survey conducted by an independent pollster.

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1:53 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Rand Paul Drops Standing in Latest Iowa Poll

U.S. Senator Rand Paul, R-KY

A new poll taken in Iowa shows Kentucky Senator Rand Paul still has some convincing to do among voters if he decides to run for the White House in 2016. 

The CNN\ORC International poll among registered Iowa Republicans gave Senator Paul seven percent support, putting him in third place behind former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan. 

A similar poll taken in March had Paul leading the potential GOP president field.  Senator Paul has made three trips to Iowa this year, holding campaign-style events and fund-raisers with local politicians. 

Among Democrats in this latest poll, Hillary Clinton remains the number one choice with 53 percent support.  In a distant second place is Vice President Joe Biden who was favored by 15 percent of respondents.

Arts & Culture
2:49 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Following Expansive Renovation, Evansville Museum Names New Leader

Bryan Knicely
Credit Evansville Museum

After two years without a permanent leader, the Evansville Museum has selected a new executive director.  Bryan Knicely comes to Evansville from Florida where he led the Coral Springs Museum of Art.

The Evansville Museum completed a major renovation earlier this year and houses 30,000 objects in its permanent collection.

"This is an exciting time for the Museum. After the successful completion of the capital campaign and building expansion, we are in a period of rapid growth and look to become the number one cultural destination in the region,” said board president Sharon Walker. “We are happy to have Bryan join the staff, as he has extensive experience leading arts and cultural centers across the country.”

Dr. John Streetman III retired at the end of 2012 after nearly four decades with the museum. Mary Bower had been serving as the interim director.