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Search for Providence mom’s killer remains active 31 years later

Cold Cases

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — It was Feb. 27, 1990, when April Terry’s lifeless body was discovered inside her second-floor apartment.

Providence Police Major David Lapatin tells 12 News the 32-year-old had been stabbed several times in the chest and neck.

At the time, the Providence Journal reported that Terry’s 4-year-old daughter was watching TV in the other room when her mother was viciously attacked.

Thankfully, the young girl was unharmed.

Lapatin said there were no signs of forced entry into the Taylor Street apartment building.

One of Terry’s relatives, who wished to remain anonymous out of fear for her family’s safety, tells 12 News she had to have known her killer.

“She let someone in,” she said. “This person, she knew, and she knew them well enough to let them into her home.”

“She didn’t deserve to die that way,” the relative continued. “No one deserves to die like that … violently. There’s way too much violence in this world as it is.”

Terry’s relative said she was friendly and social, and her death sent shockwaves through her family.

“Shock and disbelief,” she said. “How? Who? A lot of things go through your mind at that time.”

But even 31 years later, Lapatin said Terry’s case remains active.

He wouldn’t say whether there’s DNA evidence that needs to be tested or exactly what information Terry’s young daughter was able to provide them at the time of her death.

“There is other evidence that’s being worked on now,” he said. “So hopefully we’ll have some conclusion with this [case] soon.”

Anyone who believes they know what happened to April Terry is urged to contact the Providence Police Department at (401) 272-3121.

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