Authorities are investigating the death of 25-year-old bar owner who was killed Saturday night in an apparent shooting.
Blaine Whitworth's friends and colleagues on Pine Street heard the news just after 10 p.m. that he had been shot and killed. About 30 minutes earlier, police responded to a shots fired call in the 1000 block of Sunflower. When officers arrived, they found Whitworth dead at the scene.
The Missouri Rural Major Case Squad met at 9 a.m. Tuesday in Warrensburg for briefing on Whitworth's homicide case.
A total of 35 investigators from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, and police and Sheriff's agencies from Johnson, Pettis, Henry, Lafayette, Saline and Ray County convened to participate in the investigation.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol Sergeant Division of Drug and Crime Control and their Violent Crime Support Unit is involved in the investigation.
Alex Lohman, who met Whitworth at the University of Central Missouri, said he heard about his friend's passing through a mass email from the university.
"We heard there was a shooting in town, and then slowly we figured out exactly what had happened," Lohman said.
For those who knew Whitworth, they say he was a great guy and business man in Warrensburg who worked hard for what he earned.
"He would have given anything for his friends and family," Lohman said.
Warrensburg Police Chief Bruce Howey said his department is working the case as a homicide. The last homicide in Warrensburg was in 2009.
"You hope they can put a close to this case, figure it out and justice will be served. Nobody, especially a guy like Blaine, deserves what happened," Lohman said.
Whitworth owned two bars in downtown Warrensburg, and, friends say, after graduating from UCM, he went to work as a safety manager for an off-shore drilling company before deciding Warrensburg was where he belonged.
"He just wanted to come back and pursue the dream of making this town better. I believe he did a great job of that. It's just numbing," Lohman said.
As word spread throughout the central Missouri town, friends of Whitworth still can't believe they will never see him again.
"We saw him last night. He went home, and you know, we never saw him again," Lohman said.
Anyone with information regarding the homicide should contact the Warrensburg Police Department at 660-747-9133.
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