Archive for Friday, July 20, 2007

Police suspect no foul play in death at Yello Sub

July 20, 2007


Accident cause of death at Yellow Sub

Lawrence police said today Justin Emmons died of a "severe laceration to his right leg caused by contact with glass from a broken window at the location where he was found." Enlarge video

A former Yello Sub employee bled to death after cutting his leg on broken glass, according to Lawrence police. And officials said they do not suspect foul play in the death of 34-year-old Justin Emmons.

On Thursday, police released the results of the investigation that started about 6 a.m. Monday, when the Lawrence man's body was discovered at Yello Sub, 624 W. 12th St. Emmons was found a few hours after a farewell party to the business ended.

Jeff Klusman, co-owner of Yello Sub, said Sunday's celebration was unauthorized. Employees who attended the event later told Klusman that Emmons attended the party, but left before police responded about 2:30 a.m. to a caller's report that a can of paint had been thrown through a window. Other broken windows and graffiti were noticeable at the business Monday.

At some point after the party, Emmons apparently returned to Yello Sub. According to their investigation, police said, Emmons cut his right leg on glass from a broken window.

A preliminary autopsy report from the Douglas County Coroner's Office said Emmons bled to death from a cut to his femoral artery. Other, smaller cuts were found on his upper extremities. Emmons' urine tested positive for cocaine, alcohol and marijuana, the autopsy report said.

Yello Sub, which officially closed Saturday, could become the location of a new, seven-story hotel and commercial project. If the project moves forward, several buildings would be demolished, including those housing Yello Sub, Beat the Bookstore, The Crossing bar and Big 12 Burritos, where Emmons was general manager.


areyouserious 10 years, 11 months ago

consumer1: maybe because its the tired of the media not speaking the truth. Job well done LJWorld!!

areyouserious 10 years, 11 months ago

Not 1, Not 2, but 3 drugs at one time.............I know alot of great great people who jam themselves full of drugs..............sad way to go, but hard to feel sorry for somebody that doesn't really care about themselves.

Scooter_Trash 10 years, 11 months ago

Consumer 1, why wouldn't they report it? It's a factor that may have lead to the cause of his death. While under the influence of drugs and alcohol, people are known to make bad decisions and have reduced coordination.

Ghost78 10 years, 11 months ago


I think its the right thing to report on the victim's state of mind. His judgement was impaired, and he wound up losing his life. Those that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it, and nobody wants to see another tragic, avoidable death. Without examples of the consequences, how will others break away from the social drug culture you refered to?

adree66046 10 years, 11 months ago

RIP Justin indeed. Can't we just leave it at that, out of respect for friends and family?

nosense 10 years, 11 months ago

How can you say that pot definitely played a role in his death? Testing positive for pot simply means he smoked it at any point over the last three weeks to a month, not necessarily that evening. ASSUMPTIONS ARE STUPID.

vinividivici 10 years, 11 months ago

and FYI Cocaine stays in your systems for a couple days too. all we know is he was drinking that night. and, as far as i know, he did not do drugs that night. the judgemental comments need to stop out of respect for friends and family. i don't know why i keep coming back and reading new posts knowing that the negative *!%hole remarks are being made by an small, miniscule, ultra-conservative group of people who live in a city they appear to hate. it makes me sick to think i live along side people who are are so insensitive that they feel the need to bash the dead.

Veritas 10 years, 11 months ago

some sources say that pot is a gateway drug.

vinividivici 10 years, 11 months ago

doing drugs is besides the point. for all we know he did not do them that night. i mean, seriously, with all those people, where would he have done drugs? and if he did, what is it to you?

while doing drugs is dumb, people do stupid things all the time that cause harm to other people (eg: driving the wrong way down a one way street, drinking and driving, doing drugs while pregnant.................) Justin would never cause anybody harm, he was being responsible about his drinking that night, and what happened was a freak accident. do you guys seriously get off that hard slandering the name of a fellow human? its sick

Justin is greatly missed and i'm so sorry to any other friends or family of his that our community is filled with trashy individuals like those who have been posting judgements on him.

Veritas 10 years, 11 months ago

I never said that I consider pot to be a gateway drug.

Who is the idiot?

Veritas 10 years, 11 months ago



Laura Watkins 10 years, 11 months ago

Sorry, but no one is calling him a stupid, idiot jerk or a druggie/cokehead/alcoholic or accusing him of attempting to harm others. People are simply commenting that he shouldn't have done drugs (are you saying he should have?) and that the accident is tragic(are you saying it's not?). They are also speculative over whether or not the drugs/alcohol impaired his judgment. That's not slander.

Linda Endicott 10 years, 11 months ago

But it's not insensitive, consumer1, when people come on these forums and talk about the homeless, or the poor, and how they may be taking drugs and/or drinking, and how they're lazy, worthless bums because they do?

Oh, and those folks are still alive...

I think probably the reason they reported the results is because they believe that the drugs and alcohol DID play a tragic role in his death. Perhaps they thought that by reporting it, they might keep someone else from putting themselves in harm's way.

They probably believe that if he hadn't had the drugs in his system he would have been thinking more clearly, and would never have attempted to crawl through a window with broken glass to begin with.

Perhaps they believe that some other people might learn from somebody else's tragic error in judgement.

Sadly, this usually isn't the case. Most other people think that just because something tragic happened to this young man, that doesn't mean it would ever happen to THEM.

Still, the hope persists that someone might listen...

ccp 10 years, 11 months ago

Why would the Journal World report the drugs, you ask? Because it was tested by the police and it's what was found. I suppose you would like for the JW to decided what the public should and should not know about any given news story. Just let the media decide what we can handle and what is best of us all. Grow up. Yes. it's sad that he died that way. I hope people who read about it will realize that, although most people go through a phase in their lives where they try drugs, alcohol, etc. that if you continue to live that way, it will eventually catch up to you. He was in his 30s and still living like he was in college. It's not fair and it's sad, but it caught up to him. He probably survived countless other potentially dangerous situations over the years. But when you live a high-risk lifestyle, it's just a numbers game.

ccp 10 years, 11 months ago

And, if you read the story closely, you will see that his URINE tested positive for alcohol, cocaine, and marijuana, not his blood. That means he took all three very recently before his death. Plain and simple, he died of a drug induced accident.

sedwards 10 years, 11 months ago

Vini, I have to disagree with you. As a long time friend of Justin's, I appreciate the flood of negative, thoughtless, baseless comments. These comments just confirm my beliefs that Justin was a rare person that had compassion for others. I understand with the recent laws prohibiting these individuals from showing their true colors at funerals, that this must be the only remaining medium for them to spew forth their bile. Their comments are just proof positive of what a tremendous loss his family, friends, and community have suffered. In fact, these same individuals can't realise what they themselves have lost. Not only did he better their world, but he most certainly would have been decent and respectful were the tables turned. So to all those sending in their negative comments: please keep them coming from your squalid caves, glass houses, and ivory towers. You only embolster the deep respect I have for my trajically lost friend.

Stinger66 10 years, 11 months ago

Oh, LJ World, when will you do away with the comments? It just brings out the nasty, no-good citizens of this town.

kmat 10 years, 11 months ago

Get off the pot thing. Booze is what caused the reckless behavior. I know plenty of pot heads and when high the last thing they'd be doing is crazy partying. Drunks on the other hand are the ones that will do just about anything. Find me cases where a pot head caused fights or personally caused harm to another person because they were high. You won't, because pot heads would have to get up off the couch to make that happen. But we have to remember that we live in a country where the drugs that do the least harm are criminalized, while it's perfectly fine to drink yourself to death (or drink enough to cause you to do stupid crap that would allow you to get cut by glass and not care, causing you to bleed to death).

I grew up with an alcoholic parent. I've seen what booze will do to a person. As of yet, I haven't met a single pot head causing harm to others. They're just too lazy to do so.

jhoman 10 years, 11 months ago

Cocaine metabolites can be detected in urine for up to three days after consumption. Metabolites from marijuana can detected for up to a month after consumption. The only thing that we know may have certainly played a role is alcohol, which severely impairs judgment for the duration of intoxication.

If anything, a good man made a poor decision and paid for it with his life. The drugs, other than alcohol, probably did not play much of a role. Let the man rest in peace and stop calling him a "doper," for it simply shows one's ignorance in the matter. I wouldn't doubt that a large number of Lawrencians, including many 'professionals,' indulge in both cocaine and cannabis, yet we don't see myriad accidents associated with either; instead, we see alcohol causing a huge number of accidents and deaths.

beatrice 10 years, 11 months ago

b3: "And why are we suppose to have pity for a criminal."

You shouldn't, just as I won't feel pity if you ever break a law -- even if it is as minor as speeding, and you get a ticket. None of us are perfect, and we shouldn't pity imperfection in others. However, what you should attempt to discover within yourself is a touch of empathy -- for the friends and family who lost someone they loved. Yes, he clearly made some terrible choices that night and paid the ultimate price for those decisions, but to gloat that he got what was coming to him is not only crass, it suggests a level of immaturity for someone clearly old enough to type that staggers the mind. Time to grow up, b3.

hellolawrence 10 years, 11 months ago

All these comments make me want to go get super loaded tonight! I didn't learn a damn thing. You all stress me out! I need pot just to calm down from all these a-holes posting stupid comments. If you didn't know the guy, what's it to you anyway!!!!! Get a life.

coolmom 10 years, 11 months ago

pot smokers dont hurt people? are you kidding me? i am sorry for justin and sad that his life ended early but decisions made while under the influence can bite you in the ass. if he hadnt been under the influence and went in the window he could of still died. he woud of bled to death in a very short time. i feel bad for his family and just say but for the grace of god......

pagan_idolator 10 years, 11 months ago

I wonder how the person who threw the paint can through the window feels right now.

schweppy 10 years, 11 months ago

I second the appeal of bennyoates to the LJ World to shut down the message board on this persons death. Having lost a close friend myself to a drunk driving accident, I would be appalled to have people jumping to conclusions about his character or how he lived his life.

People need to let this man rest in peace, whether he was a drug user or not, his family deserves to not have his memory tarnished by these posts.

I agree that there should be room for posts on other news stories that open constructive debate, but honestly, what good does it serve to have people argue over the acts of this man who has passed. It's quite disgusting.

willcoq 10 years, 11 months ago

I chatted with Justin whenever I went into Big 12 Burrito, and I have to say that he will be missed - if not by people who scorn his life because he chose to use drugs, then by me. I will miss him because he was a good human being. He told me how he had struggled to keep his business open in Washington but that a celebrity had moved into town, and the ensuing increase in rent made his life there difficult. He came back to Lawrence, opened up Big 12 Burrito (which became my favorite burrito place in Lawrence after one visit), and was trying another start at life.

He was conversational, friendly, passionate about making his customers happy, and an all around generous and good person. I may not have known him long, and I may not have known him well, but to cheapen his death and subsequently his life by criticizing how he chose to live is unfortunate beyond words. To say he didn't care about himself (said by areyouserious), to say he was dumb for using drugs (b3 and vinividivici), to say that he got what was coming to him (b3), to assume he was not a first class citizen (madmike), for you to say any of these things is irrational beyond measure.

To the few who didn't criticize the choices Justin made in life, thank you. You are a rare breed of compassionate, nonjudgemental humans. The insensitivity displayed by the rest of you disconcerts me as a Lawrence citizen. To think that there are people I pass by everyday who would be so quick to judge others is a haunting thought. Please have some compassion for the life of a person who did you no harm.

TheHeartlessBureaucrat 10 years, 11 months ago

Hey Benny,

Don't let 'em get to you. We all know that 90% of the stuff folks say here is material they wouldn't dream of saying to your face. Especially to the families of the deceased.

I've heard many wonderful things about this man over the past week. And now it comes out that he had some level of chemical alteration. It doesn't make him a bad person in my eyes. But he did something I disagree with.

In our constant search for purity or justice or a tidy black and white story, there's always something confounding. Good people do bad things sometimes. Bad folks do good things sometimes. Lots of gray areas.

Hopefully, this information will cause more discussion. Hopefully folks will be respectful of one another in doing so. And hopefully, it will inspire some "thinking for yourself."


person184 10 years, 11 months ago

Stinger66 (Anonymous) says:

Oh, LJ World, when will you do away with the comments? It just brings out the nasty, no-good citizens of this town.

I agree. I keep trying not to read them, but here I am. They are nasty.'re the worst! Don't ever make a mistake lest people kick you and jeer at you. You suck.

lildos 10 years, 11 months ago

While I agree that some of the comments written here are hurtful and sometimes even incoherent, shutting down the message board will not do a thing. This is a tragedy that hits close to home to many of you, but this tragedy brings up an important point: the dangers of drugs and alcohol. The discussion of when he took the drugs is irrelevant, the truth is that at least one of the drugs or a combination of them puts a person in a position of impaired judgment, and this impaired judgment this time led to the death of a person that was clearly beloved by his friends and family.

Every person here in this message board that have drank or done drugs at one point in time have put themselves in dangerous situations. I know for a fact that I have done so before while drinking, and everyone should know their limits in order to avoid getting int a situation that may lead to harm or death.

If you do not want to read the comments just do so, stop reading the darn thing. Complaining about it will not do any good and asking for LJW to shut down the message board is silly. If you want to honor the memory of Justin do so by doing something productive, and not by complaining about people that are entitled to give their opinions in a message board that is known for having some insensitive people posting messages constantly.

That being said, my thought do go to Justin and his friends and family. May all of them overcome this tragic incident.

hammysammy 10 years, 11 months ago

I think it's funny that b3 would advise someone to get a life. It appears as though the only thing b3 does is sit around like a troll, basing whole entire days on spewing hate. Cowardly. b3 would never have the courage to say these things to someone's face. Give me a drug addled nice guy any day of the week over a pathetic, hate-filled moron like b3. Complete lack of substance, empathy, kindness. But this is what b3 is fishing for. This is probably the most exciting and rewarding part of b3's day. He or she has no one who will talk to him/her in real life. Keep fishing, b3. Oh, and GET A LIFE.

FormerCentralKansan 10 years, 11 months ago

Looks like the booger sugar got the best of him. Apparently no one in Lawrence thinks snorting that stuff is illegal(and stupid)since I see a lot of people here pleading for compassion and "understanding". What a dumb way to die. I'm sure Justin was a good person but he certainly made some terrible choices in the last hour of his life. Also---where are all the people defending the Yello-Sub party like they did on Monday?

areyouserious 10 years, 11 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

splovely 10 years, 11 months ago

Ghost78 I must say that was well spoken. Sometimes LJW gets carried away with privacy issues but in this situation he bled to death, and from a medical standpoint cocaine thins your bloodstream which could have contributed to the death. However I don't agree with the media putting center attention on the drugs that were used as Channel 6 did. Why not say drugs were found in his system and move on? I hope every last person who posts on here stays safe this weekend!

Mandie Eutsler 10 years, 11 months ago

i very recently read a story about drug use in this country. the study says that 1 in 12 full time employees use illegal drugs. they took a survey and paid these people $30 to participate. I'm assuming 1 in 12 were honest. what about college students and part time or even unemployed people? assuming that statistic is also 1 in 12, that's alot of people "on drugs". wake up people everyone has a vice and that doesn't make them a bad person or an idiot. this guy here made a mistake and it proved to be fatal. that sucks enough without sticking him with a label.

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