Christmas Eve search party for missing KC man leads police to body in Riss Lake

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. - A Kansas City church turned their Christmas Eve service into a search for a missing man, and ended up finding a body in a lake.

Now, the Jackson County Medical Examiner's Office is working to determine if it is indeed 40-year-old Thomas Robinson Jr.

Maranatha Worship Center members and Robinson's family started their search around 3 p.m. Tuesday at Riss Lake behind Whispering Lake Apartments near 43rd Street and Northern.

Robinson had visited someone at the apartments Dec. 13. He reportedly went out to his car and never returned.The family believes his disappearance is suspicious.

At 4:27 p.m. Christmas Eve,  searchers called Kansas City Police to say they found Robinson’s #79 Raiders jersey in the lake and his shoes.

The Kansas City Fire Department’s dive team was called in and removed a body from the lake a few hours later.

Robinson’s brother was part of the search party and hung up hundreds of flyers at the apartment complex. Last week, he said they were removed.

“Everybody knows me and my brother were like twins, always together," Walter Robinson said.

Shortly after the body was removed, police notified the search party their suspicions about a body being in the lake were correct.

“I know it’s going to be hurtful when they find out tonight that it is his son and it his brother," Maranatha Deacon Willie Bryant said.

Police have not yet identified the person whose body was found in the lake. It's also not known how the person died.

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