Homicide

KC police ID final 2013 homicide victim as missing man

Updated: 2014-01-03T23:03:48Z

By CHRISTINE VENDEL

The Kansas City Star

Ryan T. Cobbins, 25, left the Kansas City home he shared with his girlfriend and two daughters on Oct. 24 to make an 11 a.m. appointment at a barbershop near 39th Street and Prospect Avenue.

But he never returned and never contacted any friends or relatives again, said his brother L.C. Davis, of Overland Park. Eleven days later, police found Cobbins’ orange Chevrolet Camaro abandoned in an apartment parking lot with no sign of Cobbins.

On Tuesday, a Kansas City codes inspector checking on an abandoned house in the 3500 block of Flora Avenue before 10 a.m. found Cobbins’ body inside. Police did not know how long his body had been there. Investigators did not release the cause of death or a motive but said they were investigating the case as a homicide.

Cobbins attended Raytown High School, where he excelled at football and wrestling, Davis said. Cobbins attended the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg on a scholarship for both sports but dropped out after about a year, Davis said.

He worked odd jobs in construction and remained loyal to his family, Davis said, by helping their teenage sister after their mother went to prison for financial crimes.

“He helps me with her, and he was always sending money to our mom,” Davis said. “He loved his daughters. His oldest looks just like him, and she was a daddy’s girl.”

Cobbins also loved the Chiefs, win or lose, Davis said.

But Cobbins also sometimes made bad choices and hung around questionable people, Davis said. Police reports show Cobbins was grazed in the head by gunfire in a 2008 shooting that was deemed possible self-defense. His friend was killed in that shooting.

Davis, a mixed martial arts fighter and coach, said he dedicated his match last month in Omaha, Neb., to his brother, who was still missing at the time. Davis’ opponent had lost a sister to murder in August, and the event was a fundraiser in her memory.

Cobbins’ disappearance weighed on Davis, but he said he “gave everything I had in that fight.” He lost in a split decision.

He thought he was prepared for the possibility of Cobbins’ death.

“I thought it was worse not knowing,” he said. “But it was a lot harder to hear that he was dead.”

To reach Christine Vendel, call 816-234-4438 or send email to cvendel@kcstar.com.

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