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Kansas City NPR Reporter Passes Away After Being Shot

Okeson-Haberman was on life support for several days before she passed away. KCPD said they are now investigating the case as a homicide.

Ryan Hedrick

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Photo: Brandon Parigo

A 24-year-old NPR reporter that was shot while sitting inside of her apartment in Kansas City, Missouri last week has died, police said. Aviva Okeson-Haberman was reportedly struck by a bullet that pierced one of the windows of her first-floor apartment in the Santa Fe neighborhood.

Okeson-Haberman was on life support for several days before she passed away. KCPD said they are now investigating the case as a homicide.

She joined KCUR in June 2019 as the Missouri politics and government reporter, having interned at the station a year earlier. Okeson-Haberman was transitioning into her new role at the station covering social issues and criminal justice.

“She was just relentless in the pursuit of the truth,” said news director Lisa Rodriguez. “She was going to change people’s lives in this beat.”

U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver expressed shock and sadness on Twitter Monday.

“Her passion for justice and truth-seeking was palpable; her commitment to the community was inspiring; and her journalistic ability at such a young age was impressive,” he wrote. “I’m heartbroken I won’t get another phone call with her on the other end.”

Aviva graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism at the University of Missouri in 2019. While there, she garnered fistfuls of awards, including the Sigma Delta Chi Award for investigative reporting for her investigation of Missouri’s elder abuse hotline.

“I’m heartbroken that I won’t have another opportunity to make her a pizza while we sat in my backyard talking about life,” Rodriguez said. “I’m heartbroken I won’t hear another story pitch or work through another hours-long edit. I will miss her so much.”

Aviva is survived by her mother and father, her two younger sisters and her maternal grandparents.

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Ben Shapiro: Donald Trump Endorsing People Doesn’t Carry a Lot of Power

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

Ryan Hedrick

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AFP/Getty Images/Jason Kempin

Syndicated radio host and author Ben Shapiro suggested that an endorsement from former President Donald Trump is not the golden ticket it’s portrayed to be.

During his show on Wednesday, Shapiro said Trump may hold power over the Republican party but when it comes to local political races, there are other factors at play.

“So, there’s a difference between Donald Trump endorsing a person, which I don’t think has a lot of power. And Donald Trump is destroying people,” Shapiro said via Mediate.

“He (Trump) actually talked about how Brian Kemp was terrible and horrible and no good and very bad. And Brian Kemp won because he had earned the loyalty of the Republican voting base in Georgia, despite Trump’s anger at Brian Kemp.”

Shapiro concluded that “Trump does not have the sort of stranglehold the media thinks he has on the Republican Party.” 

Recently, Pennsylvania Senate candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz is one Trump-endorsed candidate that has backed away from the former president.

An Axios analysis of Oz’s social media and campaign website uncovered that the Republican candidate is no longer lauding his Trump endorsement ahead of the midterm elections this fall.

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Longtime WIBC News Anchor Retires After Nearly 30 Years

Stan Lehr is calling it quits with his final day coming July 1.

Ryan Hedrick

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Longtime WIBC-FM news anchor Stan Lehr is calling it quits after nearly 30 years behind the microphone. The Indianapolis Star reports that Lehr’s last day will be July 1. 

WIBC is owned by Emmis Communications who last week announced a move to sell its Indianapolis radio properties to Maryland-based Radio One. Lehr’s retirement reportedly had nothing to do with the news of the impending sale. 

“This will bring to an end a long chapter in the station’s history,” WIBC News Director Chris Davis wrote in his email. “His reputation as a stickler has been widely-known in the industry for decades.” 

Davis described Lehr as a “stickler” who never wanted recognition for his work. 

“Instead, he made it clear to all who work or have worked with him that strong writing, accuracy, and excellence in delivery are the best ways to serve the listeners,” added Davis. 

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WWL, FEMA Unveiling New Emergency Broadcast Studio

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Eduardo Razo

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FEMA and Audacy’s WWL-AM/FM will present the unveiling of an all-hazards upgrade to the “Primary Entry Point” facility on June 28th. 

The news conference will occur at 9 a.m. CT, leading to official remarks, Q&A, a tour of the facility, and a live demonstration at the WWL PEP station emergency studio. 

Some of the speakers at the event will include Erik Hooks, Deputy Administrator, FEMA, and Kevin Cassidy, Senior Vice-President, Market Manager, Audacy-WWL. 

“The modernization to the emergency studio increases WWL’s resiliency to continue broadcasting under all conditions, including natural disasters and acts of terrorism,” the statement said which Barrett News Media obtained. “This facility is one of 77 across the country that serve as a National Public Warning System Primary Entry Point (PEP) station, participating with FEMA to provide emergency alert and warning information to the public before, during and after incidents and disasters.”

“WWL is the 15th radio station in the country to work with FEMA to complete the all-hazards upgrade, which includes increased sheltering capabilities, expanded broadcast capacity, and sustainable power generation for all types of hazardous events.”

Anyone attending the event will arrive at check-in 15 minutes before the press conference starts.

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