Turkey vulture blamed for MU power outage

Parts of campus lost power for nearly an hour Wednesday morning after a turkey vulture’s wing hit the connector that links MU to the city power grid. The vulture died in the incident.

MU spokesperson Liz McCune said 27 buildings and four parking structures were affected by the outage. She said Jesse Hall, Ellis Library and the Student Center were among the buildings affected. Five dorms also lost power.

McCune said the outage began at 6:37 a.m. and that all buildings had power restored by 7:45 a.m.

Until the connector is fixed, which should happen by the end of the week, campus will draw all its electricity from the MU Power Plant. McCune said MU typically uses the city grid “when it makes economic sense to do so.”

— Maria Benevento

Landfill search finds materials from when woman went missing

Columbia police found materials in the city landfill that date to around the time Megan Shultz disappeared in 2006, after beginning an exploratory dig Monday, according to a press release Wednesday afternoon.

The police and Solid Waste Utility began the search of the area with the goal of finding things like newspapers, dated items and expiration dates on packages that would show which areas of the landfill would have been in use around the time Shultz went missing.

Now, crews will “determine the feasibility of doing a larger-scale excavation to actually search for evidence,” said David Sorrell, assistant director of utilities, in a press conference Friday afternoon, according to previous Missourian reporting.

“There is a need for additional exploration in the 14-acre area for any clues that will help us more accurately define the correct area or areas which may warrant further investigation,” Assistant Police Chief Jeremiah Hunter said in a press release Wednesday afternoon. “We are very thankful for not only the assistance that we have been receiving from the staff of the Solid Waste Utility but the incredible support from Megan’s family.”

Anyone with additional information in this case is asked to call the Columbia Police Department at 573-874-7652 or CrimeStoppers at 573-875-8477.

— Sarah Straughn

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