Cherry Hill woman found fatally stabbed

Son, 6, suffers wound to neck, is listed in critical condition

January 26, 2004|By Richard Irwin | Richard Irwin,SUN STAFF

Police responding to a 911 call yesterday morning from a house in Cherry Hill found a woman stabbed to death and her 6-year-old son bleeding from what appeared to be a slashing wound to his throat and unable to speak.

The mother, identified as 42-year-old Shella Renee Christian, was found in a second-floor bedroom. A former University of Maryland Medical Center employee, she and her son had lived in the house in the 900 block of Seagull Ave. for about three years, said homicide Detective Mark Veney.

The boy, whose name was not released, was in critical but stable condition in the pediatric intensive care unit at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Veney said.

Friends of Christian's daughter, who had arrived to help the mother move, came upon the grisly scene shortly before 10 a.m.

The boy, though severely injured, opened the door.

Noticing the child's neck wound - from which the bleeding had apparently stopped - and realizing that the child was unable to speak but was pointing, the male friends called police.

Police found the woman's body in a second-floor room.

An ambulance rushed the child to Hopkins.

Veney said evidence in the house indicated that the woman and her son had been attacked late Friday or early Saturday. Veney said there was no sign of forced entry or any indication that property had been stolen.

"The child was unable to speak when found because a lot of blood had settled in his throat, but he'll be able to speak in a few days when a breathing tube is removed," said homicide Detective Albert Marcus.

No motive for the attack was known last night. Anyone with information is urged to call Veney or Marcus at 410-396-2100.

In unrelated killings, police were attempting to identify a man who was shot several times Saturday night in the 2200 block of Sidney Ave. and died at Maryland Shock Trauma Center, and a man found fatally stabbed early Friday in the back yard of a house in the 100 block of Willard St.

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