The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

February 20, 2013

Body found in rubble of exploded Kansas City restaurant

KANSAS CITY, MO. — Search crews at the site of a massive explosion that destroyed a popular Kansas City, Mo., restaurant have found the remains of one person, the city's mayor said Wednesday morning.

Mayor Sly James declined to say whether the person was a man or a woman.

Authorities have been looking for a woman who worked at JJ's restaurant, was seen there before the Tuesday evening blast and was reported missing afterward. They previously said she was the only person still unaccounted for following the explosion and fire.

But James said at a news conference that authorities can't be "100 percent sure that we can account for every single person that may have been at JJ's when the explosion occurred."

Crews have been searching the site feverishly ahead of a major winter storm bearing down on the city. James said 15 people were injured in the blast. Six were still hospitalized Wednesday morning.

The blast occurred after a construction crew apparently struck a natural gas line. The explosion was felt for nearly a mile around the restaurant, shattering glass in nearby buildings and sending an ominous smoke plume above the city's prized outdoor shopping district.

One of two people first feared to be missing was later found at a hospital. But the woman who worked at JJ's was still missing, and James had stressed that finding her remained the primary focus of Wednesday's efforts.

"We have a major storm coming in this evening," James said. "We're going to work diligently to get in (to the blast site) to get underneath that weather."

JJ's was a beloved fixture on the city's culinary scene for more than 27 years. Locals knew it as a prime after-work stop, though the restaurant won a broader reputation after it consistently received high ratings from contributors to Zagat's restaurant guides, both for its food and its list of hundreds of wines.

The shopping area was established in 1922 by J.C. Nichols. Based on the architecture of Seville, Spain, it includes stores, restaurants, apartments and offices.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
State, national news
  • Cinema verite documentarian Robert Drew dies at 90 Filmmaker Robert Drew, a pioneer of the modern documentary who in "Primary" and other movies mastered the intimate, spontaneous style known as cinema verite and schooled a generation of influential directors that included D.A. Pennebaker and Albert M

    July 30, 2014

  • Homeowner killed, another injured in Vegas crime spree LAS VEGAS — A horrific carjacking and home invasion spree ended with two people dead and a woman in critical condition. One victim, Richard Ramos, a 59-year-old father of four, “fought to his death” to protect his wife and children from their attack

    July 30, 2014

  • Officer Shooting Minnesota-9 [Duplicate] UPDATE: Suspect in Minnesota officer killing in custody WEST ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Police in Minnesota say a man wanted in the shooting death of an officer is in custody after being shot by police. St. Paul police spokesman Sgt. Paul Paulos says 39-year-old Brian Fitch Sr. got out of a minivan firing at

    July 30, 2014 4 Photos

  • Officer Shooting Minnesota-3 [Duplicate] Minnesota officer killed making traffic stop WEST ST. PAUL (AP) — A police officer in Minnesota was fatally shot Wednesday while making a traffic stop and authorities said they were searching for a suspect. Mendota Heights police officer Scott Patrick, 47, was shot about 12:20 p.m. after pulli

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • Possible suspect caught in Minnesota cop shooting WEST ST. PAUL (AP) — A potential suspect in the shooting of a police officer in Minnesota has been captured. Minnesota Public Radio News reports that the officer was killed. Television news footage showed the man being pulled from his vehicle Wednes

    July 30, 2014

  • Police shooting reported in West St. Paul WEST ST. PAUL (AP) — Police are responding to the reported shooting of an officer in West St. Paul. Details weren't immediately available. Calls from The Associated Press to several police and city departments in the area weren't immediately returne

    July 30, 2014

  • Mars rover Opportunity breaks the off-world driving record Opportunity, the little rover that could, has broken a 41-year-old driving distance record that’s out of this world. The decade-old NASA Mars rover has crossed the 25-mile mark, surpassing the 24.2-mile record held by the Russian moon rover Lunokhod

    July 30, 2014

  • Minnesota officials consider high-speed rail ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota officials are holding public meetings on a proposed high-speed train linking Rochester to the Twin Cities. Transportation planners from state and federal departments are evaluating possibilities for the Zip Rail pas

    July 30, 2014

  • Study finds 5 servings of produce is enough, but we're not eating it How many times will we have to be told? Apparently we haven’t reached the point when we’ll change our habits, but here goes again: Eating five servings of fruits and vegetables every day can help us live longer. That comes from researchers’ analysis

    July 30, 2014

  • GOP gov hopeful Honour wants state spending cap Tells St. Cloud Times he wants a statutory budget cap linked to population and inflation.

    July 29, 2014