HAZELWOOD, MO (KTVI) - A 27 year-old woman was found dead in her north St. Louis County apartment Monday morning. Following an autopsy, the St. Louis County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled it a homicide.
Twenty-seven year-old Denitra Jones’s mother became concerned after not hearing from her for a whole day. On Monday morning, she called police to check on her daughter.
At around 9:45, police arrived at the Knollwood Apartments, just off Howdershell Road. “The circumstances around her death were suspicious,” says Hazelwood Police Captain Jim Hudanick.
Moments later, Jones’s apartment was surrounded crime tape, and a mother’s worst fear confirmed.
You can still see the colored chalk scribbled on the front porch, where neighbors say Jones used to play with her young nieces.
Among the doodles was written, “God bless this home.” But inside this home is a bedroom where police say Jones was killed.
Police are still putting together the timeline of events leading to her death. Hudanick adds, “This is an event that could happen anywhere; it’s an unfortunate thing.”
Gloria Goerig lives a few doors down from the victim and has a daughter around the same age. She laments, “I can imagine her mother’s pain. I mean I just, my heart really goes out to her. I saw her sitting down there and I wanted to go comfort her but I didn’t know how.”
The crime tape will soon be torn down, and those chalk drawings will fade the next time it rains.
But for those who live here, that apartment will be a constant reminder of tragedy.
Neighbor Richard Adams says, “It’ll be kind of awkward to go past there, because you know someone was there, and something happened.”
A neighbor close to the victim says Jones just discovered she was pregnant a few weeks ago.
Police have a person of interest in custody, and are not searching for additional suspects. Charges are expected to be filed Tuesday morning.