By Ruben Castaneda and Hamil R. Harris
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, June 3, 2005
Stacey Seaton lived with her family in a neighborhood of well-maintained $300,000 townhouses in what residents consider a quiet, secure section of Bowie.
But investigators say they are looking into another aspect of the 17-year-old's world -- her association with people with arrest records, people suspected of selling or using drugs.
Prince George's County homicide detectives yesterday were interviewing people in Seaton's life to determine whether they had anything to do with her violent death Wednesday afternoon, when the teenager was fatally shot on a paved path not far from her home in the 13000 block of Silver Maple Court.
"If anyone has any information, please call the police," her distraught mother, Gale Seaton, said outside her house yesterday.
Investigators hope that her plea is answered.
Police have a number of leads to pursue, and "the case is wide open," said one investigator, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because an arrest had not been made.
Among the angles that detectives are investigating is whether the teenager's recent discovery that she was pregnant had anything to do with the attack. Seaton learned the day before she was killed that she was several weeks pregnant, two law enforcement sources said.
Seaton's boyfriend was interviewed by detectives early yesterday, the two sources said.
Seaton was found shot in the head on a winding path in a wooded area behind a playground in the 3200 block of Scarlet Oaks Terrace. A passerby discovered her about 3:30 p.m., and she was pronounced dead at a hospital a short time later.
Cpl. Diane Richardson, a police spokeswoman, said Wednesday that it was surprising that a homicide occurred on a well-populated, well-traveled path during daylight hours.
Yesterday, police detectives and forensic technicians returned to the neighborhood to look for clues.
At the slaying scene, Bill Greene, a county police forensic technician, got on his hands and knees and combed blades of grass with his bare hands. Greene said he decided to return to the scene after receiving a report that a patch of blood was found just off a park path.
"I am looking for anything that would shine," said Greene, a 25-year veteran of the police force. Greene said he was hoping to find a shell casing.
Neighbors said Seaton had stopped attending Bowie High School and had earned her GED at an alternative school. Relatives and friends of Seaton remembered her with affection. "She was a good girl," said Allison Seaton, 21, the victim's older sister.
"She was a wonderful teenager who was very nice and well-mannered," said Yolanda Smith-McRae, a neighbor and friend of the Seaton family.
The crime shook Natasha Johnson, 32, a real estate agent who recently purchased a nearby townhouse.
Johnson said her two children, ages 9 and 7, were playing earlier this week in the park. "It is scary and alarming," Johnson said. "My children cannot go to the park unattended."
In an unrelated case, county police yesterday were investigating the afternoon shooting of a teenager near District Heights.
About 2:30 p.m., police went to the 6500 block of Insey Street to investigate a report of gunshots.
Police found a youth who had been shot and gravely wounded. He was taken to a hospital in extremely serious condition, police said.
Richardson said the 16-year-old victim was standing on a corner in a residential area when a dark-colored vehicle drove up to him. Someone in the car opened fire, and the youth was shot in the head. He ran across the street and collapsed. His name was not released.