FOLSOM, CA - The investigation into the death of a Folsom woman last week has generated new information police hope will help solve her murder.
Officer Jason Browning with the Folsom Police Department said Alice Murphy, 64, who was found dead in her Creekside Drive apartment Dec. 21, had been violently attacked. The victim had broken ribs and multiple bruises on her face and head, Browning said.
Police say it's possible Murphy knew her attacker. They would not comment on whether she had been sexually assaulted. Police also said they cannot rule out that Murphy may have left her front door unlocked.
"She had a cat that got up very early in the morning and she was notorious for opening that door about four inches," said Murphy's son Mark Judish.
Judish said his mother was devoted to her two granddaughters, who live in Orangevale. "She was so looking forward to Christmas. We have Christmas presents still for her under the tree," he said.
Meantime, residents of the apartment complex where Murphy lived held a vigil at noon Wednesday in her memory. Murphy's neighbors said she was an energetic and fun-loving woman who had made many friends while working as a cashier at a nearby Walmart store.
Residents said they once enjoyed a feeling of security that included talking walks at night. That comfort has been replaced with anxiety. "Detectives have been to every apartment and interviewed us, more or less. We're all scared and we're all taking precautions," said a resident who wanted to be identified only as Barbara.
Residents told police no one noticed anything out of the ordinary the weekend of the murder.
"Nobody heard anything. Dogs didn't bark. That's the surprising thing about it. That's what we told the police. We didn't see or hear anything," said neighbor Geralyn Weston.
Detectives have learned Murphy frequented restaurants and bars in the Folsom area. They're asking anyone who may have seen Murphy the weekend of Dec. 19-20 to contact them at (916) 930-1098; CrimeTip@folsom.ca.us; or WeTip at (800) 78-CRIME. Informants to the WeTip Hotline may receive a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction.
Judish said he cannot conceive of who would have wanted to harm his mother. "My mom loved life and was a very happy individual, and we will miss her greatly, forever. My kids don't have a grandma now."