Officers, called to check on the well-being of a 34-year-old woman yesterday, discovered her body in an upstairs bedroom of her Capitol Heights town house and a frightened 4-year-old girl an adjoining room, Prince George's County police said.
The woman, whose name was withheld until out-of-state relatives are notified, had been dead several hours when police discovered her nude body about 11:30 a.m. in her house in the 1000 block of Frimler Court, police said.
She had been stabbed, police said, but an autopsy was scheduled to determine the exact cause of death.
The officers found the child hiding in bed, under the bedsheets, in an adjoining room, police spokeswoman Carol Landrum said. The girl, the dead woman's goddaughter, was dazed but unharmed, police said.
The girl occasionally stayed with the woman and had been left in her care Monday night, Landrum said. Investigators believe the child was in the house when the killing occurred, but police declined to say whether the girl may have seen the slaying.
Employees at Chesapeake & Potomac Telephone Co. became alarmed when the woman, a customer service representative who was usually punctual, had not arrived for work by mid-morning, Landrum said. Some of the woman's colleagues called police after they went to her home in the new subdivision of London Wood and failed to get a response there, Landrum said.
Officers entered through a rear door that had been left ajar, police sources said. There were no obvious signs of forced entry or robbery, police said.
The woman, who was unmarried, lived alone, Landrum said.
Police said last night it was possible the woman was slain by someone she knew, but they had no suspects.