On the second anniversary of the death of Rebecca Payne, her parents plan to visit the Mission Hill apartment where she was killed today in hopes of raising awareness of her unsolved slaying and convincing anyone with information to contact police.
“Maybe that one person with information can help with the case,” Nicholas Payne, of Connecticut, said this morning.
Payne said police have told him that they are close to solving the case, that they have a person of interest, “but they still need some more information to close the case.”
Rebecca Payne was a 22-year-old Northeastern University student when she was found by the building manager of her Parker Hill Avenue apartment the morning of May 20, 2008, with gunshot wounds to her chest and legs.
Witnesses told police after the body was discovered that they had heard several shots earlier in the morning but never thought to call 911. Police also searched for a black van that may have fled the area around the time the gunshots were heard.
Nicholas Payne said Wednesday that his daughter might have survived the attack if someone had called 911: She lived across the street from the New England Baptist Hospital.
The father said his daughter may have been killed in a case of mistaken identity.
Her parents have said they will never have closure, but hope for justice.
Rebecca Payne has been remembered by her parents as a promising student with a “smile that could bring a whole room together.”
She knew she wanted to attend college in Boston after her first visit during high school. She had close friends from school and the neighborhood, and she was studying athletic training.
The family is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case. Northeastern University and Legal Sea Foods, the restaurant where Payne worked as a waitress, contributed to the reward money.
Elaine Driscoll, a Boston Police spokeswoman, said, "The homicide investigation into the death of Rebecca Payne is extremely active and ongoing."
Driscoll said she could not discuss the details of the investigation "as to not compromise the integrity of the investigation."
"At this time, detectives continue to encourage anyone who may have any details about Rebecca's death to please come forward and contact authorities," Driscoll said.
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