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Red Rally kicks off Chiefs training camp

Downtown St. Joseph was painted red Friday night for the Red Rally, to kick off the start of the Kansas City Chiefs training camp.

This is the 10th year of the camp taking place in St. Joseph, but the first year of this event in Downtown. The rally’s purpose was to bring Chiefs fans together and create excitement for the upcoming season.

Mosaic Life Care, Made With Uncommon Character and Downtown Association were the sponsors of the event.

Before the event even started there were hundreds of fans lined up in anticipation of receiving a free Patrick Mahomes II headband donated by Hy-Vee.

The event included performances by Kansas City rap artist Mizz Nekol, classic rock band Swift Kik and the Chiefs drum line.

Mitch Holthus, voice of the Chiefs, was the emcee of the event. Chiefs President Matt Donovan and general manager Brett Veach also were in attendance to give fans a sneak peek of what to expect this season.

Kristi Bailey is a part of Made With Uncommon Character that helped organize the event.

“The Chiefs executives came out and talked about some of the things they have planned for the year at Arrowhead and with the team,” Bailey said. “Our fans got a little sneak peek for this year and that’s something you wouldn’t have gotten anywhere else.”

Another big attraction of the night was the Andy Reid and Mahomes look-alike contest. The winner of the Reid look-alike received two tickets to a game and the Mahomes winner received a jersey.

Bailey said they collected ZIP codes all night to see how far people were traveling.

“There were people from California, Texas, Arkansas, it’s really been a great turnout with people from all over the region and even the country,” Bailey said.

Bailey and other sponsors were happy with the turnout for the event and said it makes them hopeful for a great season.

The first practice open to the public is at 3:30 p.m. today.


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Chiefs open to looking at other venues for training camp

The opening press conference for Chiefs Training Camp took place Friday on Missouri Western State University’s campus.

The Kansas City Chiefs’ President Mark Donovan, Missouri Western’s President Matthew Wilson and Mosaic Life Care’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Laney all spoke to kick off training camp.

Donovan was asked a lot about whether or not the Chiefs would be returning to the city for training camp. This year is their 10th year in the commitment to the state of Missouri, which could be their last.

“As we have grown there has been more and more interest from other venues,” Donovan said. “Some of them are not realistic. Just know that we really enjoy St. Joe. There is a lot of efficiency here, a lot of comfort here. So we look forward to that conversation.”

With the other venues there has to be a process in which the president has to see if it will fit the way Andy Reid and the Chiefs like to have their camps set up.

“A lot of factors go into it. I mentioned when I answered the question of why we do this. That matters to us,” Donovan said. “Someone would have to create a similar environment that allows that to build. They are out there and they have expressed interest, so we will see.”

Missouri Western and the community of St. Joseph stand behind the organization and would love to see the team back here for years to come.

“(We) look forward to not only this year, but for many years to come partnering with the Kansas City Chiefs and Mosaic to build upon a wonderful foundation and create success,” Missouri Western’s President Wilson said.


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Police to up presence at The Crossing

The Crossing Outreach Ministry will be a full-time operation beginning Oct. 1, and one of the things that will coincide with the new beginning is more security.

The St. Joseph Police Department gave insight into how this will look for the neighborhood around the facility, which is located at 701 S. Eighth St.

“The Police Department as a part of this project will be employing off-duty status officers at different times each day in the affected area,” Captain Jeff Wilson said. “By affected area, I mean we’ve kind of laid out a geographical area of what we think is affected by people trying to receive services through The Crossing.”

Most of the officers involved will have received crisis intervention training, which gives them ways to communicate with individuals who may suffer from mental-health problems. That training may help convince some homeless individuals, who can be independent by nature, to accept help in the form of work or finding shelter.

“Our focus will be to utilize as many of the CIT officers as we can,” Wilson said. “They go through a 40-hour course of specialized training to help them understand how to deal with consumers that may have mental health issues.”

The St. Joseph Health Department also provides training for the public called Mental Health First Aid. Sgt. James Langston of the St. Joseph Police Department has participated in that training, which lasts a day.

“Number one tip would be to be patient, to be clear and concise with your words that you choose,” Langston said. “Treat them the way you would want somebody to treat yourself or a loved one.”

Along with the St. Joseph Police Department, Pivotal Point Transitional Housing and Community Action Partnership will have a presence at The Crossing. Together, the different entities will bring a holistic approach to helping the homeless in St. Joseph.


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Diemel brothers case now a death investigation, 1 person in custody after abandoning brothers' truck

Law enforcement officials said Friday that the case of two missing Wisconsin brothers has turned from a missing persons investigation to a death investigation.

A man was arrested in relation to the case of Justin and Nicholas Diemel, but the suspect has not been charged with homicide or similar crimes.

According to court documents, a male suspect named Garland Joseph Nelson has been charged with tampering with a motor vehicle, a first-degree felony. The vehicle is alleged to be the one used by the brothers before their disappearance. The suspect was arrested by the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Department this Friday.

“As part of the missing person investigation during the interview and under Miranda (warning), Garland Nelson admits to driving the 2019 Ford F-250 from the residence of 3321 SE Catawba Road,” Caldwell County Deputy Dennis Lund said in a court document. “In the rental agreement, Mr. Diemel signed the section as the only authorized driver of the before mentioned truck.”

The statement by Lund said the truck’s GPS information shows that just before 9 a.m. on Sunday, the brothers left a hotel in Cameron, Missouri, and then arrived at an address where Nelson conducts business at around 9:30 a.m. Lund said the truck’s GPS shows it leaving that address around 11:45 a.m. when it was then spotted by a security camera at a local Braymer, Missouri, gas station around 12:15 p.m.

DOC072619-07262019154458.pdf

According to Lund, no passengers appeared to be inside the truck at that time. Around 12:45 p.m. the truck pulled into the commuter lot where it was later found, according to Lund.

“(It) is left running with the keys in the ignition and lights on, where Garland Nelson admitted he left it,” Lund said in the court documents.

Nelson is being held without bond, according to court records. Lund said he believed he wasn’t to appear in court in response to a summons because “he has tried to mislead law enforcement.”

Friday marked the fifth day of searching by authorities for the two brothers.

Law enforcement officials are searching a home on Catawba Road near Braymer, where there appears to be a command post. Crime scene tape is surrounding the property, and a helicopter was spotted circling overhead.

Southeast Ayers Drive has been closed off by police. Searchers appear to be using the road to access the property.

Justin and Nicholas Diemel, ages 24 and 35, didn’t make their Sunday afternoon flight out of Kansas City after they traveled to the area on business. Multiple police agencies, including sheriff’s offices from Caldwell, Clinton and Buchanan counties, have been searching several sites in both Caldwell and Clinton counties. As many as eight law enforcement officers with the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office are participating in those searches.

Buchanan County Sheriff Bill Puett said there are cattle on the Catawba Road property. The Diemel brothers were in Missouri for business related to livestock. An officer from the Missouri State Highway Patrol has been called in to secure the cattle while maintaining the integrity of scene.

Two search sites are known to the public. One was an “open area” near where the brothers’ rental truck was found in a commuter parking lot in Holt, Missouri. That lot is a dirt patch off of Interstate 35, just a few hundred yards from multiple gas stations. The other site is a farm property near Braymer. Police said they’re scouring that location, checking ponds and waste piles as part of the search.

“We’re still actively working, it’s very methodical searching and we have had dogs and things like that out here,” Clinton County Sheriff Larry Fish said.