PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) - It is a crime that shook the entire Picayune community - an elderly woman brutally murdered in the middle of night.
"I can still remember it as if it was yesterday," Picayune Assistant Chief of Police Jeremy Magri said.
Magri was a patrol officer on June 30, 1998 when he was dispatched to a home on Washington Street. Magri was told someone was possibly in cardiac arrest, so when he arrived he was not prepared for what he was about to see.
"There was several family members in the yard, crying, upset," Magri said.
Leola Jordan, 91, was in bed covered in blood. Magri said Jordan's daughter had her arms wrapped around her mother's lifeless body.
"Everybody we talked to said she was a great lady, she was a Godly lady. She was 91 years of age, kept to herself, and just the way she was murdered was horrible," Magri said.
Jordan was stabbed numerous times.
"It appears maybe she woke up and there was some type of altercation that occurred and possibly after whoever the suspect or suspects were, after they committed the gruesome crime, they fled the scene," Magri said.
Police believe whoever murdered Jordan went into her house through her front door. There was no forced entry, but family told police Jordan kept her door locked.
More than 16 years after Jordan's murder, her house no longer stands, and no one has ever been arrested for her murder. But Magri said it is a crime he has never stopped trying to solve.
"Anytime we get a new investigator that comes in, we let them review the whole case file hoping they will see something that has been overlooked," Magri said.
Magri has also had state and federal agencies take a look at the case. And with technology constantly evolving, evidence has been sent off for another look. Though Magri believes the missing pieces could come from what someone knows.
"We ask that you put yourself in the family's position," Magri said. "If this was your mother or grandmother that was just gruesomely murdered, that you would want somebody to step up and give some information if they knew it, to where the family could receive some type of peace."
Crime Stoppers is offering up to a $2,500 reward for any information leading to the arrest of Jordan's killer. If you know anything, you are asked to call Picayune Police at (601) 798-8653 or Crime Stoppers at (601) 799-CLUE.