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11-27-13

Victim found after
reported shooting
‘Suspicious death’ case started in
Platte County at Motel 6

by Valerie Verkamp
Landmark reporter

A gunshot was heard near the busy intersection of Interstate 29 and Barry Road Thursday night in Platte County.

Kansas City police are now trying to determine if the reported gunshot at the Motel 6 at 8230 Northwest Prairie View Road, caused what they are terming the suspicious death of Michelle L. Russell, 19, of Independence.

Darin Snapp, public information officer with the Kansas City, Missouri Police Department, told The Landmark it is unknown whether the young woman took her own life or if it may have been a homicide.

An acquaintance of the victim told police the Independence woman took her own life.

“An autopsy report will determine if that was even a possibility,” said Snapp.

“At this time, we are investigating the circumstances surrounding the shooting and it is unknown if it is a homicide,” states a news release put out by Kansas City police.

Police responded to a 9-1-1 call around 10 p.m. at the Motel 6. Upon arrival, officers were left with more questions than answers. There were obvious signs and indications that something transpired, but all the involved persons had fled the scene.

A short time later, authorities received information that a vehicle containing a victim suffering from a gunshot wound had pulled up to the curb at the North Kansas City Hospital. The driver of the vehicle apparently got spooked and left the emergency room area with the injured woman.

Her body was later discovered inside that vehicle on Friday morning around 4 a.m. near 35th Street and Jackson Drive in Independence.

As of press time, officers with the Independence Police Department and the Kansas City Missouri Police Department said they are continuing to investigate what at this point they are calling a “suspicious death.”