Friday, 23 June, 2017

KC police ID second body found by missing woman's relatives

Jessica Runions Jessica Runions
Erik Tate | 08 April, 2017, 00:24

Police have identified one set of remains found earlier this week as Jessica Runion, the 21-year-old Kansas City woman who disappeared in September, after leaving a party with the ex-boyfriend of another young woman who has been missing for ten years.

The Jackson County Medical Examiner's Office on Wednesday identified some of the bones as those of Jessica Runions, the Cass County Sheriff's Office said in a news release.

The family said it had searched rural areas almost every weekend since she went missing.

Yust was once a suspect in the disappearance of his former girlfriend, Kara Kopetsky, the Kansas City police have said.

Belton police have been in contact with the families of Kara Kopetsky who disappeared in 2007 and Jessica Runions who hasn't been seen since her burned out vehicle was discovered previous year.

A mushroom hunter found the remains Monday in an area south of Belton and a second skull was found nearby Tuesday. She was last seen at Belton High School in May 2007. "We would not continue to search if we thought we had them all", Weber said.

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"In my heart of hearts, I believe it's Kara", she said.

Both Kara's and Jessica's families were notified about the discoveries.

According to court documents, Kopetsky claimed that Yust had kidnapped and restrained her, choked her and threatened to cut her throat in their nine-month relationship. Her family has maintained their belief that Yust is responsible for her daughter's disappearance.

Yust is now in custody on charges of setting Runions' auto on fire, but he has not been charged in either girls' disappearance. "Here we are, still waiting, yet again".

At this time it's not clear whether 28-year-old Yust will face additional charges now that the remains have been found, but there is sufficient reason to believe that he might have been involved. One of the bodies was identified as Runions'.

"She knows that if she's having a bad day that she can call us, and our phone is always open and we're always going to answer", Rhonda Beckford told The Star hours before Runions' remains were identified.

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