Topeka Police Investigate Unsolved Murders

By: Suzie Gilbert Email
By: Suzie Gilbert Email

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) -- With little more than a month left of 2011, police are searching harder than ever for clues in the growing list of unsolved homicides. Among the killed, a two-year-old girl, and a woman killed in her Southwest Topeka home, in what investigators called a difficult crime scene, and months later, no identified suspects.

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Residents of the neighborhood near 3520 SW Belle in Topeka are wondering what's taking so long.

"It seems like it's just at a standstill," resident Mary Valdivia said. "Have they given up or is it just going to stay a cold case or are they just keeping stuff under their belts?"

Valdivia says she and her husband have used extra security since September, when Sheila Hachmeister, 58, was murdered just across the street. Topeka Police were here for days collecting evidence, but two months later, they still won't comment on any leads, or possible suspects, saying it could harm the investigation.

In fact, at least seven Topeka homicides are still unsolved, including the death of a toddler almost three months ago, Gabrielle Thompson, who died at 3141 SE Dupont.

Topeka Police say they're still waiting on a coroner's report in the child abuse case. 13 News called the Shawnee County Coroner's Office on Monday, they said they couldn't comment on an open investigation.

A spokesman for the Shawnee County District Attorney says his office still doesn't have reports on any of the cases, meaning they're still waiting for investigations to be completed, and for reports to be forwarded for review, leaving neighbors with more questions than answers.

"It does make you uneasy because you think well there's murderers out there and who's to say we're not going to be the next one?" Valdivia said.

Topeka Police say they're still taking tips on open cases, just call Crimestoppers at (785) 234-0007.

The following cases are still under investigation:

Sheila Hachmeister, 58, 3520 SW Belle
Gabrielle Thompson, 2, 3141 SE Dupont
Corey Nance, 21, 635 SE Lawrence
James Trice, 64, 617 SW Taylor
Robin Nicholson, 52, 1500 Block of SE 22nd
Ricardo Dowd Jr., 23, 2000 Block of SE California
Terence Wilkins, 32, 2024 SW Buchanan


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