Posted on Tue, Jan. 25, 2005

Family of missing woman seeks tips via mail

By RUSS PULLEY The Kansas City Star

The family of Summer Shipp, a Kansas City woman missing since early December, now has a post-office box for collecting tips from people who don't want to contact police.

They are asking anyone with information about Shipp's disappearance to send a letter — anonymously if they wish — to Friends of Summer, P.O. Box 410821, Kansas City, MO. 64141-0821. There also is a Web site, www.friendsofsummer. com.

Also this week, the family will send 50 letters to national media trying to stir interest in the case, said Shipp's daughter, Brandy Shipp. The hope is that someone will come forward with information.

“I'm thinking of anything I can to keep the story in the media and in front of everybody,” Brandy Shipp said.

Independence Police Chief Fred Mills said he thought it was “strange” that the family would set up a method to take information in that manner, when officers already can take tips anonymously.

People also could call the TIPS Hotline, which can take anonymous information. That number is (816) 474-TIPS, or (816) 474-8477.

Mills said he wouldn't want the family to go to that extra expense.

About 20 friends and family also searched for evidence last week in Bundschu Park in Independence, based on a tip that came to a private investigator working with the family. The search, which lasted about two hours and included three trained dogs, did not recover any evidence.

Shipp, whose 55th birthday passed earlier this month, last was seen in an Independence neighborhood.

Independence police searched the room of a man from that neighborhood and also arrested him on unrelated traffic warrants.

The man's bond initially was set at $70,000, but he was released earlier this month after posting a reduced bond of $1,500.

To reach Russ Pulley, call

(816) 234-7811 or send e-mail