Independence Examiner

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Sauerbry posts bond

He was questioned in Shipp case

By Stephanie Howard
The Examiner

The Independence man arrested after police searched his home for evidence of a missing Kansas City woman has posted bond.

Jeff Sauerbry was arrested in December on traffic warrants. Summer Shipp, 54, was seen going to his house in the 1500 block of College Terrace on Dec. 8, the day she disappeared. The Kansas City woman's car was found just across the street from the house.

Police say Sauerbry was never a suspect in the case. Sgt. Dennis Green, with the Independence Police, emphasized Sauerbry was arrested on traffic warrants.

"He is a convicted felon," Green said. "We were checking all the convicted felons in the area."

Summer's daughter, Brandy Shipp, said she believes Sauerbry had nothing to do with her mother's disappearance.

"At this point there's no evidence that points to him," Brandy said. "But anything's possible."

With the help of family and friends the reward money for any information leading to Shipp was raised last week to $100,000.

Brandy is still optimistic her mother will come home.

"It's only been five weeks," Brandy said. "I know that's still a long time, but it's not like it's five years.

Last week friends of Summer sponsored a movie screening at a theater in downtown Kansas City, which raised an additional $6,000.

"It was a full house," Brandy said. "We had to turn people away."

Although nothing is planned for the immediate future, Brandy is hopeful that continuing to plan events like the screening will help keep her mother's face in the public eye. Her picture is already on taxi cab tops throughout the metro as well as on five commuter buses and a billboard on Interstate 435.

"Her face is getting out there, her picture and her name, and that's what we're trying to do," Brandy said. "Something's going to turn up."

To reach Stephanie Howard, send e-mail to stephanie.howard or call her at (816) 229-9161, Ext. 25.