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Two months after a 59-year-old woman was discovered by neighbors murdered in her Palm Springs home, her brother is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to her killer’s arrest and conviction, he told local media this week.
Jennifer Dillon’s wife, Athena Kelly, was out of town when Dillon stopped responding to texts on Jan. 25, according to KESQ-TV. A trio of neighbors went to her house that day to conduct a welfare check and made a gruesome discovery: Dillon was dead inside, covered in blood.
Although police marked the death “suspicious,” they didn’t initially rule it a homicide. In fact, when neighbors called the police, they were told that it was fine for them to clean up the scene somewhat for the sake of Dillon's wife, one of the neighbors, Annette Baine, told KESQ.
“I disturbed everything. I’m sure I disturbed everything,” Baine told the station.
It wasn’t until Feb. 9, more than two weeks after Dillon's death, that police announced they were investigating the case as a murder, according to a press release. Investigators have since pulled more than 1,100 surveillance videos from the area around Dillon’s home looking to spot the perpetrator, but no arrests have yet been made, KESQ-TV reports.
Dillon’s brother, Tom Dillon, announced on Friday that he’s offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the killer, according to KESQ.
“Someone out there knows something. The reward will hopefully have them come forward so we can find out what happened to my sister,” he told the station.
The Palm Springs Police Department hosted a community meeting on Tuesday to discuss updates in the investigation. There, they indicated that the probe may be a lengthy process.
“We have asked a lot of different entities for a lot of information, and sometimes this can take several months,” Lt. Erik Larson said at the meeting, according to MyNewsLA.com.
Police took no questions in the roughly 15-minute meeting, leading some attendees to voice complaints before the call abruptly ended, as reported on the local news site.
Dillon was an active advocate for LGBTQ rights. She married her wife on Nov. 4, 2008, the day it became legal for them to wed, according to an obituary published in the San Francisco Chronicle.
Palm Springs police hosted a town hall centering on the town’s LGBTQ community at the same time as the meeting for information on the investigation into Dillon’s death, NBC Palm Springs reports.
Anyone with information on this case is urged to contact police at (760) 778-8422.
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