OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- It was not a normal traffic accident scene Sunday afternoon on busy U.S. Highway 69 between 167th and 179th Streets in Overland Park as authorities searched the murky waters of the Blue River for possible accident victims.
For hours, law enforcement authorities with the help of a dive team searched and found Anousha Shirazi, 20, of Fairway, Kan., who was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police closed one lane of the highway for hours as the investigation continued.
It all started around 1 p.m. when a Kansas Highway Patrol trooper on routine patrol in the area noticed something odd.
"He noticed a debris field along the southbound lanes and guard rail," Lt. K.L. Woods of the Kansas Highway Patrol explained.
After some investigating, the trooper found much more than just debris.
"He noticed there was a car and the car upside down in the creek," Lt. Woods said.
According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, the car somehow left the road and overturned in the Blue River, which is described as being more like a creek or stream in that area. The water was so murky, it was hard to determine how many victims could possibly be in the water, so a dive team was called in to assist.
Meanwhile, above the river on the highway, accident investigators searched for more clues. They hope someone may have seen something.
"There have been no reports of any reckless drivers, wrong-way drivers, drunk drivers. Nobody is missing that we know of. So if any one has seen anything we urge them to call," Lt. Woods said.
Since Highway 69 is a well-traveled road, authorities believe that the accident happened either late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.
Shirazi was a graduate of Shawnee Mission East High School and was attending Johnson County Community College.
If you have any information about this case, please call the Kansas Highway Patrol.
A memorial fund has been established for Shirazi. To donate:
- The Anousha Shirazi Memorial Fund
- c/o Missouri Bank
- 1044 Main Street
- Kansas City, Mo., 64105
One dead in accident in south Johnson Co., Kan.