Banquet Raises More Reward Dollars For Crimestoppers

By: From 13 News, Ralph Hipp
By: From 13 News, Ralph Hipp

TOPEKA (WIBW) -- Dozens of guests raised thousands more dollars for CrimeStoppers in a "Night of Entertainment" Thursday.

The Ramada Hotel and Convention Center hosted the crowd, with several members of the audience called up front to receive honors from the organization.

KTWU General Manager Eugene Williams is honored as the Community Partner of the Year for the station's support with broadcasts of "Capitol Cold Cases" specials. The one-hour programs, produced by CrimeStoppers, help generate new leads on Topeka murders that happened long ago.

Shelley Starr, who reconciles the books for the organization, and helps coordinate the rewards payments to tipsters calling in leads, is the winner of their Board Member Service Award.

And longtime Southwest Bell employee and reserve officer Lt. Craig Johnson of USD 501 Police gave credit to his crimefighting colleagues, as he was named the recipient of the 2013 Law Enforcement Partner Award.

Magician and comedian Gene Turner provided the night of entertainment for the audience, providing a light note for 2013's event. In previous years, interesting speeches have been offered up by the Chiefs' Mitch Holthus, or from bureau agents or forensics experts who are invited to speak at the fundraiser.

13's Ralph Hipp served as emcee of the event again this year. He called for a moment of silence at the beginning of the evening, honoring CrimeStoppers founding father George Logan of WIBW-TV, as well as slain officers Corporal David Gogian and Officer Jeff Atherley, killed in the line of duty 10 months ago this week.

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