Arlington police scramble to solve four murders in six days

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by TERESA WOODARD

WFAA

Posted on June 10, 2013 at 10:00 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jun 11 at 11:41 AM

ARLINGTON — The constant parade of police passing by the 5300 block of Wild West Drive hasn't stopped.

Detectives keep working leads, and neighbors keep trying to fight frayed nerves, yet they are having little luck.

Four people have been murdered in Arlington in less than one week.

"It's sad something like this had to happen, and when it happens right across the street it really makes you wonder — are you really safe?" asked Trae Ayers, who watched a murder investigation unfold from his front porch.

His neighbor, 67-year-old Signe Edwards, was found dead inside her home on Sunday night. Tax records indicate she owns two properties on Wild West Drive. The victim's family could not reach her, so they asked police to stop by and check.

Detectives said there was no sign of forced entry, but there was obvious trauma to Edwards' body.

"It's an act of a coward," said Ayers. "She was a sweet person, always waved when I waved... always out in the yard or walking the dog."

Other neighbors said she kept to herself, but was very friendly.

Just a few hours later and less than a mile way, Arlington police found 27-year-old Ross Shreves, a teacher at Kennedale Junior High School, shot to death inside a car in a parking lot on Little Road.

Last Tuesday, 83-year-old Leona Swafford was carjacked, kidnapped and killed in South Arlington. One-hundred-and-fifty tips have come in on that case, and while detectives continue to work leads, they've yet to make an arrest.

And on June 5, 19-year-old Donsha Hughes was shot and killed outside his home.

None of these murders have been solved, and police said it appears none are linked.

"It's tough for people to understand that, but the information we have on each individual case is leading us in a specific direction that doesn't seem to go back to the others," said Arlington police spokeswoman Tiara Richard. "In every one of these cases, what it comes down to is detectives getting some good information from someone, then connecting it to other information that's come in, so all these pieces come together like a puzzle."

Arlington had had just one murder for all of 2013 until last week. The department has just four homicide detectives, so they are pulling detectives in from other divisions.

They say a tip from the public — however obscure it may appear to be — could be the key to cracking each of these cases.

Neighbors like Ayres hope those tips come in soon.

"Speak up. Say something," he urged to whoever may have information. "That could be your mother, grandmother... anybody. You'd want closure on that. You've got to speak up; you've got to say something."

Arlington police would like to hear from anyone who has a tip about any of these cases. The number to call is 817-459-5638.

E-mail twoodard@wfaa.com

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