Posted on Thu, Jan. 27, 2005

Intriguing clue arrives in Summer Shipp disappearance


The Kansas City Star

A slip of plastic recovered this week might help find Summer Shipp. Or it could be a dead end.


A single “frequent shoppercard belonging to Shipp, a Kansas City woman missing since Dec. 8, was recently returned to the Ball's Food Stores.


Shipp disappeared from Independence. Her family is asking anyone who may have found a single, key-chain sized Hen House card to contact them or authorities.


The discovery could lead to other evidence if authorities can determine where it was found. That location would be searched for other evidence. Whoever found it could be interviewed for additional clues.


The card had not been used within the last couple of months.


There's an outside chance the card came from someone connected with Shipp's disappearance, said John Underhill of Missouri Investigations Inc., who is working with the family for free.


It could be someone playing games,” Underhill said. “It's all up in the air.”

If it was turned in at a store, that person might be on videotape.


The card's punch-hole was still filled so it has never been attached to a key ring.

Summer Shipp could have carried it in a purse, wallet or pocket.


Ball's Food Stores mailed the card this week to Summer Shipp's residence on Pennsylvania Avenue in Kansas City.


It had been mixed in with other lost cards and routinely processed by an employee, said Jeff Gaines, corporate loss prevention investigator for the company.


The family received Shipp's card in the mail on Wednesday.


Independence detectives could not be reached Thursday for their comments.


For more coverage, see tomorrow's Star.


To reach Russ Pulley, call (816) 234-7811 or send e-mail to



First glance

• A plastic Hen House card belonging to missing Kansas City woman Summer Shipp is returned to Ball's Food Stores. Family would like to hear from whoever found it.

• Tips can be mailed to Friends of Summer at P.O. Box 410821, Kansas City Mo. 64141-8021. Or call the Move Up secret witness line at (816) 753-1111 or the TIPS Hotline at (816) 474-TIPS or (816) 474-8477).