Progress made in Sechrist homicide

By Tom Joyce -

Surry County Sheriff Graham Atkinson says headway is being made in a homicide case in which a 52-year-old Bannertown woman was the victim.

“Investigators have been working almost non-stop since Saturday night,” Atkinson said Friday in reference to the death of Sandra Jayne Sechrist.

Sechrist’s body was found in her home on Blue Ridge Lane on March 17.

Upon securing the scene, investigators determined the woman’s death to be a homicide. No information has been released concerning how Sechrist died.

The State Bureau of Investigation was called in to assist local officers in the case.

Sheriff Atkinson added Friday that investigators have developed “a list of contacts” Sechrist was known to have.

“A lot of folks have been interviewed,” he said of efforts to “document as much as we can.”

From that, investigators are trying to narrow down the findings to hopefully lead to a breakthrough, Atkinson indicated.

“There were articles collected at the scene for evidence,” he said of further efforts at the victim’s home on Blue Ridge Lane, a dead-end road that runs off Old Buck Shoals Road near U.S. 52 south of Mount Airy.

“And we’re still open to new pieces of information,” Atkinson said.

Anyone who can shed light on the woman’s slaying is urged to call the Surry County Sheriff’s Office at 336-401-8900.

Atkinson said persons who might think any details they have are insignificant should still come forward. “Because it may be the piece of the puzzle that we’re looking for,” he explained.

Overall, the investigation is going well, Atkinson said.

“We are optimistic that we will be able to bring this to a conclusion.”

By Tom Joyce

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