Federal Judge in Kansas City, Wife Found Shot to Death

Associated Press

A 27-year veteran federal Kansas City, Kan., judge and his wife were found fatally shot in their home Sunday, federal authorities said.

U.S. District Judge Earl O'Connor, 76, and his 66-year-old wife, Jean Ann O'Connor, were discovered when the couple failed to respond to a nurse who regularly visited their home, said Jeff Lanza, special agent in the Kansas City office of the FBI. A gun was found in the bedroom where both bodies were discovered, he said.

Both apparently had been shot once, and investigators found no sign of forced entry, Lanza said.

"The initial investigation would not lead one to conclude that a third person was involved," Lanza said.

U.S. District Judge G. Thomas VanBebber, who had known O'Connor since 1960, said O'Connor was in good health and active. But O'Connor's wife had been "quite ill recently."

O'Connor had served on the bench in Kansas City, Kan., since October 1971.

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