Police: Leads few in slaying

SNELLVILLE - Beulah Gotwalt wasn't a fan of solitude.

When her only daughter moved to Georgia four years ago, the 88-year-old great-grandmother followed suit, settling into a two-story Snellville home with family members.

Under that same roof, police found Gotwalt brutally murdered Jan. 18, stabbed multiple times as she lay in bed, a bloody pillow over her face.

More than two weeks later, Gotwalt's family is still scurrying for answers, still navigating the grief, said her daughter, Nancy Boughan. Gotwalt will be buried in Pennsylvania this weekend, near her deceased husband.

"She was a sweet woman," Boughan said. "It's very upsetting."

Boughan, who was emotional over the phone Tuesday, declined further comment.

"I really don't want to think about it," she said.

According to police, family members last saw Gotwalt alive the evening of Jan. 17 when she retired to her bedroom. They checked on her before noon the following morning, a Sunday, when they found the gruesome scene and called 911, police said.

Investigators interviewed several persons of interest, who were not identified, but have made no arrests. New clues are scarce and a motive is still unclear, said Snellville police Capt. H.O. Thomas.

"We're still working the case but don't have any new leads at this time," Thomas said Tuesday.

Gotwalt's Oak Meadow Drive home did not appear broken into, nor were any of her belongings taken, police said last month.

Police located several weapons capable of Gotwalt's wounds but are awaiting tests to determine if they've found the right one.

Snellville police Chief Roy Whitehead declined to elaborate on the investigation Tuesday.

"We're still working the case," Whitehead said, "and we have nothing new to report."

The murder marks the city's first since November 2007, when a robber donning a Halloween mask fatally shot Domingo Alfredo Espinal, 52, at his West Main Street auto business. No arrests have been made in that case.