Tuesday evening the Cape Girardeau Fire Department responded to a call that the outer wall of the building had collapsed, taking out part of an apartment in the back of the structure. Parts of the wall continued falling throughout the week, and Friday morning Cape Girardeau housing assistance coordinator Steve Williams condemned the building. He said the part of the building that housed The Comix Strip is secure, though he was unable to say when the comic book store may reopen.
Ed Dodd of Scott City, the owner of the building, watched as crews demolished the wall.
"I've been sick to my stomach ever since Tuesday evening," Dodd said. "I've been through so much already, having already lost my business Mister Ed's Trading Post to a fire awhile back."
Williams said an insurance adjuster arrived around 11 a.m. Friday. A structural engineer surveyed the condemned building later Friday to determine if the residents could re-enter their apartments to retrieve their belongings.
Dodd must now decide if he can rebuild or whether he must demolish the rear of the building. Williams said he did not know when that would happen.
A Cape Girardeau police officer had been stationed outside the building since the wall partially collapsed.
"It was for safety concerns," Sgt. Jason Selzer said. "We wanted to make sure no one went in the building and got hurt."
However, the department ceased having an officer at the scene by noon Friday, Selzer said.
Andre Dennis was among the residents of a nearby apartment building at 120 N. Sprigg St. who watched the demolition from underneath a shade tree. He said the demolition was needed.
"It was a good thing because it was in terrible shape," Dennis said. "But the downside is it took our parking in the time being."
621 Broadway, Cape Girardeau, MO
623 Broadway, Cape Girardeau, MO