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Police report: Friends searched for Kirksville man before his body was found in parking lot

Following the discovery of his body, Columbia police spoke with several friends of Ryan Berry of Kirksville, according to a police report obtained by ABC 17 News.

A City of Columbia trash collector called the police department around 6:30 on the morning Monday, July 29, after finding Berry's body in the parking lot on Lake Ridgeway Road.

The Boone County Medical Examiner's Office said an autopsy determined that Berry, 43, died of a drug overdose. The same office told KTVO that it was a lethal amount of methamphetamine.

The Columbia Police Department investigation report includes the accounts of multiple officers, investigators and medical experts that covered the case.

Berry was found lying on the parking lot of Furniture Row wearing only boxers and socks. Officers identified the body through fingerprints as well as a nearby wallet, which was found amongst other clothing about 130 yards away from the body.

There were injuries to his forehead, elbows and knees that were consistent with falling, according to the 33-page report.

Multiple friends who were with Berry the night before described their last memories with police, according to the report.

Berry called friends in Columbia and asked for a ride around 5 p..m. on July 29. He had been drinking, so one friend drove Berry's truck back to their home and the other drove him back to the same house, according to statements to police.

The friend driving Berry told police he asked to stop multiple times before going back to the home. Once to get food, and another to get a hotel room.

Security at the Red Roof Inn on Texas Ave. kicked the pair off the property for a reason unknown to the friend who spoke to police. The friend then went to the Welcome Inn on Providence Rd., but no staff was immediately available, according to the report.

Berry then told the friend to go to the BreakTime gas station on Paris Rd., and then left the vehicle. The friend told police that they attempted to convince Berry to go home before he "threatened violence," according to the report.

After Berry left, the friend went home to meet the other friend. The two returned to the area near Paris Rd. and Vandiver Dr. to look for Berry, but were unsuccessful.

The next morning Berry's body was found less than a mile away at Furniture Row.

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Barry Mangold

Barry Mangold reports for ABC 17 News on weekday evenings and anchors weekend evening broadcasts.


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