Local News

Volunteers Hit Streets to Help Find Slain Mom's Killer

Posted July 1, 2007 12:05 a.m. EDT
Updated July 1, 2007 11:33 a.m. EDT

— Family and friends of slain mother Jenna Nielsen say they refuse to sit back and wait. They want to know who killed the pregnant woman, and they’re asking for the public’s help.

On Saturday, 30 volunteers handed out in downtown Raleigh and near the convenience store where Nielsen was found dead. They’re hoping the personal push will lead to a break in the case.

Nielsen’s father, Kevin Blaine, walked through the State Farmers Market asking vendors if he could hang posters about his daughter’s murder.

“All it’s going to take is one phone call,” Blaine said.

Just across the street from the Farmers Market is the convenience store where Nielsen was killed while delivering newspapers on June 14. The mother of two was eight months pregnant.

“I’d be lying to you if I said I didn’t want to go out there and find him myself and take care of it myself, but I have to let the police do their job,” Blaine said.

Vendors were glad to be doing their part by putting up posters announcing a $10,000 reward for information that leads to the killer’s arrest.

“I just hate it for them. It’s so sad, and I just wish there was something I could do to find whoever done it,” said vendor Laurie Jones.

That’s why Nielsen’s family, friends and even strangers whipped out maps, divvied into groups and hit the surrounding area to pass out 2,500 fliers.

Nielsen’s family is hoping the increased exposure will bring them closer to justice. Closure is another matter, however.

“I won’t tell you there’ll be any closure to this at all, ever,” Blaine said. “This will be a void we’ll have to live with for the rest of our lives.”

What they say they can’t live with is knowing Nielsen’s killer is still on the loose.

Raleigh police have described the slaying as random and have not yet named any suspects.

They are, however, looking for a person of interest who was seen near the crime scene in the pre-dawn hours of June 14.

The individual is described as a male in his late teens or early 20s, standing about 5 feet, 3 inches tall and weighing about 120 pounds. He had black hair pulled into a ponytail and wore a dark-colored sleeveless shirt and baggy denim shorts.

The Raleigh Police Department has set up a tip line at 919-227-6220 for information. All information will be kept confidential, police said.