Reporting Derek Valcourt
BALTIMORE (WJZ)—A murder mystery. A local family grieves after the discovery of the body of a mother of three in some Baltimore County woods.
Derek Valcourt spoke with the victim’s emotional relatives and has more on the investigation.
Detectives are desperate for leads as three young children prepare to bury their mother.
There are tears from one of the three heartbroken children who will now spend the rest of their lives without their mom—33-year-old Janell Balogun.
A bicyclist discovered her body in a wooded area along Frederick Road in the Oella neighborhood of Baltimore County.
“So someone threw her out like trash. They threw our sister out like trash,” said Rosalind Murray, victim’s sister.
Balogun’s sisters, her three sons, her father, nephews and nieces all sat down with WJZ to remember the woman they loved.
“She had a family. We just had to bury our mother three years ago and to have to go through this is devastating for this entire family,” Murray said.
Police say when they found the victim’s body in the woods, she had no obvious signs of trauma. She had no identification on her. They needed her fingerprints to figure out who she was.
“That’s not an area that she would be in. She would never stray too far from home. She would always come home,” Murray said.
County police are guarding details of the murder but say they have few leads to go on.
“We are reaching out to anyone in the Oella community who may have seen or heard anything unusual, and also anyone who has had contact with this victim who may be able to provide some insight into why she was killed,” said Elise Armacost, Baltimore County Police.
“To take her, it just isn’t right,” Murray said.
Family members want answers, and her grieving father demands justice.
“I wanna say whatever happened to my family can happen to your family. Anybody out there who knows something, come forward. This is devastating. Please don’t let this go unpunished,” said Earl Clayborn, victim’s father.
Anyone with information on the case is urged to call Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7-LOCKUP.
A funeral for the victim is set for Saturday morning at Life Church in Baltimore’s Brooklyn neighborhood. A wake is set for 9:30 a.m., and then the funeral is set to begin at 10 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, the victim’s family asks for donations to help purchase funeral appropriate clothing for the victim’s children. Donations can be made in the victim’s name (Janell Balogun) to Life Ministries Church at 3820 S. Hanover Street, Brooklyn, Md.