Second person dies in July 2 wrong-way crash on I-29

PLATTE CITY, Mo. - UPDATE: North Kansas City Hospital personnel said Benjamin Shively died unexpectedly on Saturday night due to complications directly related to the fatal wrong-way crash.

He is the second victim in the crash from July 2.


One person is dead after the driver of a stolen pickup truck led police on a high-speed chase down the wrong way of a Kansas City interstate on Wednesday.

The Platte County Sheriff's Office said 35-year-old suspect Justin Burkholder stole a red pickup truck and proceeded to evade police along I-29 in the Northland. He drove the wrong way on southbound I-29 before crashing into a Suburban near Twin Bridges.

"It was like something from out of a movie," said Rosa Cavitt. "I couldn't believe it. It really scared me and I started swerving trying to get out of the way. I'm just glad my kids and husband are OK."

Both southbound lanes and one northbound lane of I-29 were closed as police and emergency crews responded. The interstate was reopened around 5:35 p.m.

"I just tried to get out of the way, and then I looked in my rearview mirror and saw the red truck hit the other car and it was a loud boom," said motorist Kale Wattenbarger.

Burkholder died at the scene.

The driver of the Suburban was taken to the hospital with serious to life-threatening injuries.

Police said the stolen truck contained stolen weapons.

Burkholder had a felony probation violation warrant out of Wyandotte County and three failure to appear warrants out of North Kansas City, Mo. He also had a suspended Missouri driver's license.

We'll update this story as new information becomes available.

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