Farmington woman’s daughter appeals for help finding mother’s killer

Posted June 28, 2011, at 2:08 p.m.
Last modified June 28, 2011, at 8:01 p.m.

FARMINGTON, Maine — Joined by more than a dozen family and friends, the daughter of an 81-year-old woman fatally stabbed in her apartment made a public plea Tuesday for help finding the killer.

Julie Shaw said she’s asking anyone with information about the June 21 death of her mother, Grace Burton, “to do the right thing, to come forward and contact the police.”

“The person who committed this horrible act has no conscience if they could do this to an 81-year-old woman,” she said. “My family needs to know who did this to our mother. If it were your family, you would want answers. I am pleading to everyone, let’s come together as a community.”

Burton was stabbed by someone who broke into her Farmington apartment, police said. She called 911 and described her assailant as a man with a thin mustache; she died later at a Lewiston hospital.

The attacker lost a significant amount of blood in the struggle, and investigators hope DNA evidence will help identify him, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.

Detectives have interviewed about 200 people, and about 100 vehicles were stopped overnight at a roadblock set up by police seeking information about the case, officials said.

Speaking outside her mother’s apartment, Shaw described Burton as a “kind, loving woman” who was battling cancer and had written an obituary that was to appear in the newspaper upon her death.

“Unfortunately, some person changed this, and took our mother’s life into their own hands, brutally killed her and snatched her away from all of us who loved her,” said Shaw, who was surrounded by her mothers’ family and friends.

Her mother left behind five children, eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren, she said.

Investigators say the intruder gained entry by cutting a window screen, and they believe he suffered cuts to his hands or fingers. Detectives haven’t said if anything was taken from the apartment.

 

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