Sara Shepherd

Public safety reporter

Photo of Sara Shepherd

I'm the Journal-World's public safety reporter. I cover crime, courts, fire and related features in Lawrence and Douglas County and, sometimes, neighboring counties.

I’ve been a reporter at the Journal-World since 2012. Prior to taking over the public safety beat I covered the University of Kansas and higher education beat — including some of our local post-secondary institutions’ occasional, inevitable intersections with the law. Previously, I was the night police reporter for The Kansas City Star, where I covered untimely death or destruction most every day for a few years, everything from quadruple homicides to massive chemical fires. I’ve also covered suburban city government and schools for The Star and The Shawnee Dispatch, a suburban weekly paper just up the road in Johnson County.

I'm originally from Emporia, but I had ancestors living here in Lawrence when William Quantrill sacked the town in 1863 (they survived the massacre, probably thanks to being politically insignificant German immigrants). I’m also a fourth-generation KU grad, led by my great grandfather, who got his undergraduate and law degrees from KU. I majored in journalism, art history and French and wrote for The University Daily Kansan, where my reporting beat was campus police.

For local public safety news, see all the Journal-World’s recent stories here, and check out the Lights & Sirens blog.

To reach me, call 785-832-7187 or send email to sshepherd@ljworld.com. Follow me on Twitter @saramarieshep.

Recent Stories

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More than 74 years of marriage later, Lawrence couple still remember the day they met

Hob and Helen Crockett celebrated their 74th anniversary on Monday. He’s now 96, and she’s 93. The Crocketts had only seen each other in person three times before they got married. Their wedding — on April 10, 1943 — made it four.

From hand games to quilling, upcoming week is chance for public to experience American Indian traditions

American Indian arts and traditions will be on display for the public throughout the upcoming week at Haskell Indian Nations University. Haskell community members and visiting artists will give a series of presentations and workshops on traditions from hand games to quilling, planned in conjunction with Native American Heritage Month.

Church shootings refresh Confederate flag debate that inspired KU prof's 2004 film

When Kevin Willmott wrote and directed the mockumentary film “C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America,” which screened at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, he knew it would be relevant for a long time. Sure enough. By Sara Shepherd

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Best KU Souvenir Store | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Shopping

The Kansas University souvenir market isn’t just for T-shirts anymore. One step inside Kansas Sampler in downtown Lawrence makes that obvious.

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Best Restaurant to Watch a Game | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

If you thought Buffalo Wild Wings was a good place to watch a game at its former location, you should see it now.

Best Women's Clothing Store | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Shopping

Earlier this year, BusinessInsider.com reported that nationwide Kohl’s was women’s favorite place to shop for clothing and has been for several years now.

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Best Breakfast Spot | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

As breakfast out and weekend brunch have exploded in popularity, so, too, have out-of-the-box creations on morning menus. At the same time — perhaps with breakfast more than any other meal — the basics still reign. The Roost tries to offer the best of both worlds.

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Best Overall Restaurant | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

Free State Brewing Company isn’t just a good restaurant — it’s a Lawrence tradition.

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Best Pizza | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

Even big cities here or abroad would be hard-pressed to claim anything quite like the Italy-meets-Midwest farmhouse pies at Limestone pizza + kitchen + bar, which opened in April 2014.

Newly acquired Bloch painting offers warmth with hint of mystery

A newly acquired painting by one of Lawrence’s more famous past residents — at least in the art world — is warming up the contemporary gallery at the Spencer Museum of Art. “Summer” by Albert Bloch is now on display in the 20/21 Gallery. By Sara Shepherd

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