Decatur Police Search For Suspect In Murder Case

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DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) - A 7-year-old boy got off the school bus Monday afternoon, went into his house and discovered his mother's body. She was the apparent victim of a homicide. Tonight, Decatur Police reveal the person of interest they're looking for in connection with the case.

Investigators say they have a rough description of their person of interest. But first, back to the neighborhood where it happened, where a young boy made the most horrible of discoveries.

"The other child came home from school and discovered his mother dead, and that, of course, may live in his memory forever," Decatur Police Captain Nadis Carlisle tells WHNT News 19. Investigators decline to reveal the details of the scene in which the body of 31-year-old Ana Chavez was discovered. But her 7-year-old son ran from the house crying for help after discovering her body. He had seen what no child is supposed to see. Her 2-year-old daughter was still inside the home, unharmed.

Next door neighbor Burl Oliver says, "She was a pleasant, happy disposition person to me. We would wave and she was smiling and cheerful." Oliver says he often saw the family outside. They had lived in this rented home for about a year and a half.

"There's a lot of heartache but we can't imagine anything worse than the child himself," Oliver said.

Police closed off the street in front of the crime scene for several hours Monday night. Tuesday morning detectives continue to canvass the neighborhood looking for any clues. Capt. Carlisle says they believe Ana Chavez was killed before noon Monday.

Neighbors reported seeing a Honda Civic leave the house. The car is black with red pin striping and had what appeared to be a flat tire. "We know this person was seen leaving the home yesterday morning," Carlisle says. He adds, "He is described as a Hispanic male, approximately 5'5" to 5'9" in height. He was wearing a dark toboggan at the time. On his neck there was a script type font, was a tattoo."

A bulletin has been issued for the Hispanic male. He is referred to as a person of interest in this case thus far. Neighbors tell us his car, the black Honda, has been seen at the Chavez house several times in the past.

--Al Whitaker

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