DALLAS — A 24-year-old woman who was found murdered last week died from blunt force trauma to the head and asphyxiation, according to the Dallas County Medical Examiner's office.
No arrests have been made in the murder of D’Lisa Kelley, who was pregnant when she disappeared just over two weeks ago. Family members said Kelley was rarely apart from her two-year-old son, Dunyae, and they don’t know how to explain to him that his mother isn’t coming home.
“We know that he misses her,” said LaShaun Steward, Kelley’s sister. “He cries. He can’t tell us exactly what’s going on... he knows something’s going on.”
Kelley disappeared on the evening of March 7 after leaving her grandmother’s house to attend her best friend’s wake. She never arrived, and family members said there was no way she would have willingly missed it.
D'Lisa's sister, Jasmine, soon received a frightening call from her phone.
“She could hear her screaming for her life, telling someone in the background, 'Get off of me! Get off of me! Stop! Stop!'" Steward said. "It was a male voice in the background saying, 'Shut up! Be quiet! Stop screaming!'"
Jasmine repeatedly tried to call her sister back; no one answered.
A text came from Kelley’s phone, saying that she would call back soon, and that the person she was with was upset because he thought she had been with another man.
D'Lisa Kelley never called Jasmine or any of her other relatives.
Her family reported her missing, and police began a public effort to find her.
A woman believed to have been Kelley was spotted in a restaurant the weekend after she disappeared, and at a hotel last week. Authorities are still trying to determine if it was Kelley.
On Friday, police found Kelley’s body on Presidio Avenue, just under two miles away from her grandmother’s home. Family members wonder how she got back over to her neighborhood since she did not have a car, Steward said.
"We're just hoping that they find the person who did do it," Steward said. "She was a loving sister. You could that she cared about whoever she came in contact with."
The family has set up a web site to raise money to pay for Kelley's funeral. So far, 173 people have donated about $3,800. Many of them have written comments saying that they don’t know her, but want to help.
"That really just humbles my heart," Steward said. "People just care, and they want to support and make sure she's well taken care of."
Meanwhile, Steward is trying to find the right words to one day explain to Dunyae what happened to his mother... that she loved him... and never would have willingly parted with him.