Cliff Thomas was awakened early Tuesday by a frantic call from his grandmother. Prince George’s County police were in front of her Landover home, investigating the stabbing death of a 30-year-old woman.
“I thought she was having a heart attack or something,” Thomas said of the call from his grandmother, Carrie Jenkins, 89. “Last thing I would imagine is someone dead” in her front yard, he added.
Police identified the victim as Stefanie Anne Littlejohn, whom officers found shortly before 3 a.m. in Jenkins’s front yard on Kent Village Drive. Littlejohn was unresponsive and “suffering from trauma to the body,” police said.
Littlejohn did not live in the house or the neighborhood, Prince George’s police spokeswoman Julie Parker said. Her body was taken to a Baltimore hospital for an autopsy to determine if she died from the stab wounds or other possible trauma, Parker said.
Authorities said Tuesday that they were still searching for a motive and a suspect.
Littlejohn’s aunt, Georgia Wilson, said her niece had a restraining order against a former boyfriend and had received threatening phone calls recently.
Court records confirm that second-degree assault charges were filed in October against a man Wilson identified as a former boyfriend of Littlejohn’s. Last week, a warrant for the same man was issued for allegedly violating a protective order.
“She looked for love in all the wrong places,” Wilson said.
Wilson said she was one of Littlejohn’s closest relatives, her niece’s mother having died last year and her father four years ago. Wilson and Littlejohn would talk nearly every Sunday morning after Littlejohn took her 5-year-old son to church.
“She adored her son,” Wilson said. “She lived for him.”
Littlejohn worked as a security guard at an amusement park. She was “kindhearted” and “would give you the blouse off her back,” Wilson said.
As Wilson planned funeral arrangements, neighbors near the Landover home where Littlejohn was found expressed surprise over the stabbing. Thomas, who spent part of his teen years living in his grandmother’s home, said young people are often seen outside of the neighborhood milling around. But he said the community had “calmed down” since the days he lived in the house.
“It’s been one of those rough places,” said Thomas, who spent the morning speaking to reporters as blood still stained his grandmother’s front steps. Firefighters arrived about 9:50 a.m. to clean the scene.
Next door, Thaddeus Davis, 63, said he didn’t know about the stabbing until Jenkins called him at 3:30 a.m.
“I’ve never seen anything like that that close to me,” Davis said.
Dana Hedgpeth and Magda Jean-Louis contributed to this report.