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Boone County prosecutor found dead at Columbia home

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Boone County's top prosecutor was found dead Saturday at his home.

Columbia Police Chief Geoff Jones said officers were called to an apparent gunshot death at about 9:35 a.m. at Prosecuting Attorney Dan Knight's south-central Columbia home and found him dead. Jones said foul play doesn't appear to be a cause.

Jones said police were working with the county medical examiner and will release more information later. The chief was emotional, saying his department worked closely with Knight on criminal prosecutions.

"Dan worked as a prosecutor, as a dedicated professional, for many, many years," Jones said. "We all grieve with his family and with his colleagues and other professionals in Boone County."

Several police cruisers and a crime scene investigation van were at the home Saturday. Police did not leave the scene until 4 p.m.

The police department said on Twitter that there is no threat to the public.

Dan Knight

Knight was hired as an assistant prosecuting attorney in 1992 after graduating from the University of Missouri School of Law, according to his bio on the prosecuting attorney's website. He was first elected prosecutor in 2006 and has been reelected as a Democrat every four years. He was unopposed in 2020.

Knight said in February that he was not seeking reelection this year and was contemplating a run for judge in 2024. Had he run for reelection, Knight would have faced a primary challenge from one of his former deputies, Roger Johnson.

The governor will have to appoint a prosecutor to take over Knight's work. The circuit court can appoint an acting prosecuting in the meantime.

Check back for updates to this developing story.

Article Topic Follows: Columbia

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Matthew Sanders

Matthew Sanders is the digital content director at ABC 17 News.


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