Investigators: Elderly Woman's Home Invaded Two Weeks Before Murder


BERKELEY COUNTY, W.Va. - When authorities arrived at the victim’s home Saturday afternoon, what they discovered inside was a disturbing scene. Martha Tyler, 72, was found dead with a bag over her head and her hands tied behind her back.

It's a murder that's shocked the surrounding community and left neighbors with many unanswered questions.

"My wife said look, somebody killed Martha,” said David Grove, a neighbor who lives across the street from Martha.

Grove says he is in shock after finding his neighbor dead in her home on Picture Mountain Drive.

"I looked and seen it and it just shocked me, and I told them not to touch anything and at that point, the daughter was hysterical,” said Grove.

Investigators say there were no signs of forced entry, but just two weeks ago, Martha’s back door was kicked in by an intruder who then took off with her purse. Authorities are still trying to figure out if anything was stolen from Martha’s this time.

"She had been the victim of a breaking-and-entering only two weeks ago,” said Sgt. Ted Snyder of the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department. “And there had been reports that this particular neighborhood had possible break-ins over the last couple of weeks. We are exploring those cases now."

Neighbors say Martha had been living alone ever since her husband died about a year ago. They say they never thought something like this would happen in their neighborhood.

"I’m very on edge,” said Yvette Taylor, who lives a few houses down from the victim. “I'm home a lot during the day and you just don't feel safe in your own neighborhood. That poor woman to have had to gone through anything so violent. I'm praying for her family and just hope they can find resolution and catch whoever did something so horrific."

Many who knew the victim are now left with the haunting question: Why would someone want to kill Martha?

"That’s the shock of the whole thing. I have no idea," said Grove.

The Berkeley County Sheriff's Department says the autopsy is scheduled for Monday morning. They are asking for the public's help in their search to find the person responsible for this crime. If you have information, call (304)-267-7000 or Crime Solvers at (304)-267-4999.

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