Woman found dead inside NE Houston home

June 15, 2010 6:59:05 AM PDT
A neighbor is hoping his surveillance video could help police catch some killers. Early Monday morning, a woman was killed in her home near Old Humble Road and the North Beltway. A neighbor thinks his video camera may have caught the killers. If nothing else, that neighbor finds the car on his video suspicious. Everyone in the neighborhood is on high alert ever since Joyce Mable Cleveland was murdered. She's described as well-respected and proper. It appears she was beaten to death.

Cleveland's rocking chair was idle Monday night, but her neighbors weren't.

"It's an outrage for us here," neighbor Ruben Guzman said.

On Monday morning, Guzman saw the signs of violence on her front door.

"I noticed there was blood streaking on it, blood was still running down," Guzman said.

So as he grieves, he also offers this advice he knows may sound extreme.

"Anyone in Harris County, take a weapons course, arm yourselves," he said. "Mable Cleveland is a prime example."

Neighbors on Willowtex knew the 78-year-old victim as Mabel. Just after midnight, another neighbor heard dogs barking and saw two men at her door. He called Guzman, who then grabbed his gun to check on her.

"I was calling for her to come, be visible make some movement, do something," Guzman said. "Nothing was happening."

So he called 911. Police responded to find the victim dead on her living room floor. She had suffered severe head trauma.

Whoever killed her, investigators believe, went in through a front window.

Ever since, one neighbor who doesn't want us to identify him has been reviewing surveillance video from cameras posted around his house, and one car he believes stands out.

Just 45 minutes before the 911 call, it drives by slowly with brake lights on. He plans to show it to police.

"This is a dear, dear friend," Guzman said.

Meanwhile, neighbors are left puzzled as they question why anyone would hurt a woman who's been a fixture in this neighborhood for decades.

"Now they're walking into the houses and killing us in our sleep," Guzman said. "We have to take action."

Neighbors are angry as well. If police have a motive, they aren't revealing it, although we do know the victim's home was in disarray when they responded. The suspects are still out there.

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