The bizarre death from multiple shotgun wounds two weeks ago of Josephine Schlotman Mitchell Evans, one of the wealthier women in Prince William County, remains officially unsolved despite the opinion of county police that it was a suicide. The County prosecutor has refused to discuss the death.
Mrs. Evans, 61, the wife of Thomas Mellon Evans, a New York-based tycoon and corporate takeover specialist, was found suffering from the shotgun wounds at her Gainsville estate, Buckland Farm, at about 7:20 a.m. May 5. She died at Prince William Hospital soon after.
One source said Mrs. Evans had left several notes including one in which she said she was depressed over her separation from her husband whom she married in 1953. Each had been married once before.
Evans, according to a Business Week cover story last October, controls firms with total sales well over $1 billion.
"His acquisition and operating methods have also earned him a reputation as a feisty infighter and astute trader, a financial wizard, and as a pirate, robber baron, or shark, depending on whether the assessor is an observer or a victim," the article said.
Evans could not be reached for comment.
Prince William Commonwealth Attorney Paul Ebert refused to discuss the case. He said he had not received an autopsy report and would make no comment until he had the report.
The Northern Virginia Medical Examiner's Office said the report was mailed early this week to Prince William officials.
Police said Mrs. Evans was found by a maid, who called police to the mansion on the horse breeding farm near the Fauquier County line. Mrs. Evans had superficial wounds to her neck and chest and motal wounds in her left side and neck, all from a single shot, 12-gauge shotgun, police said.
Investigators said that Mrs. Evans wounded herself with three shots while on the front porch of the house, then went inside, got a fourth shell from a closet and shot herself for the last time. Notes had been left to close friends and relatives, police said. Nothing was found to be missing from the estate, investigators said.