The bloody and brutalized body of a Denver mother of four was found inside her downtown Denver loft on Valentine’s Day, six days after a homeless man she’d been trying to help stabbed her to death, says her relatives.
The family of 49-year-old Jeanna Leslie told Denver7 they first knew something was wrong when she did not show up to take her kids to a Nuggets basketball game on Feb. 13. Denver police were called to Leslie’s apartment to conduct a welfare check. When they entered the loft, they discovered a crime scene.
According to the arrest affidavit, responding police officers entered Leslie’s apartment and were met by an “overwhelming smell of decomposition.” They conducted a search and found scattered throughout the apartment, blood on the victim’s clothes, and four stainless knives, two of which had blood on them.
Police also found a custody report from the Wheat Ridge Police Department belonging to Terry Lane Dunford II, a brown Quicksilver wallet with a Department of Veterans Affairs ID card, a Hawaii issued driver’s license, and a Denver Rescue Mission ID card, all with Dunford’s name on them.
Police arrested the suspect, Terry Dunford, 40, around 11 p.m. Friday after a tip led them to his location, reported CBS4 Denver.
Neighbors were heartbroken to learn that Leslie’s compassion may have led to her death. The teacher was reportedly allowing Dunford and another homeless man to live at her place to help them get back on their feet.
“That just speaks volumes of who she was,” neighbor Antonio Grant told CBS4. “A beautiful soul. Really nice lady.”
Arrest records show officers booked Dunford into the Denver detention center early Saturday morning on a charge of first degree murder.
(Photo: Denver Police)