Cold Case Investigation: The last text from Lisa Stover

ROCHESTER, Pa. — It was a shocking crime that rocked a Beaver County Community.

A mother of two was found murdered in her own apartment, just minutes after texting her ex-boyfriend.

And nearly seven years later, the case has gone cold.

Rick Earle sat down with Investigators who are still actively working the case and holding out hope that one day they’ll be able to track down the killer.

“Everything seemed to happen in the bed. It was messy and violent,” said Rochester Police Detective Police Jeff Lizzi.

Lisa Stover, 30, a single mother of two, was found brutally beaten and bludgeoned with an unknown object and then shot while in her own bed.

“Brutal, very brutal. One of the more violent scenes that I’ve ever seen,” said Dan Viscuso, a Beaver County detective, who’s also working the case.

It happened at the Riverview Terrace apartments in Rochester in October 2016.

No one has ever been charged with the crime.

“I look at those young boys and they’re growing up and that question is in their mind. They want to know what happened to their mother,” said Viscuso.

Stover had just finished classes and arrived back at her apartment in Rochester just after 6 p.m.

She had been texting the father of her two children.

He was watching the kids at a friend’s house several blocks away.

She told them to bring them to her.

He arrived here about 15 minutes later and found her unresponsive in bed.

“They see blood on her and stuff and yea, I mean they went over to my brother’s house,” said her ex-boyfriend, Mark Yaros.

Yaros said someone had to let him in the main door since it was locked but then he had to force his way into Stover’s apartment. It too was locked.

Earle learned that Stover sent that last text message to her ex around 6:30 p.m., saying it was OK to bring the kids over.

Investigators believe there was a very short window of opportunity for the killer, as Stover was likely attacked sometime during the 15 or so minutes it took her ex to get to the apartment.

The murder weapon has never been found.

We spoke with Yaros and Stover’s mother just days after the murder.

“It’s pretty much like a dream. I’m saying like it’s not real,” said Yaros.

“Makes me angry, sad, hurt, all kinds of things,” said Sherry Zelinsky, Stover’s mother.

Zelinsky said her daughter was taking pre-law classes and raising two boys, ages 3 and 10.

“She was my beautiful baby girl, and he ripped her out of my life like she was nothing. She was something,” said Zelinsky.

Yaros told police he saw someone in a hooded sweatshirt running from the apartment complex as he arrived to drop off the two boys at their mother’s apartment.

Police eventually tracked down that mystery person.

“We talked to them and they had answered the questions and they have passed the polygraph,” said Lizzi.

And police believe an elderly next-door neighbor may have heard the gunshot.

“I don’t think she ever specified how many she heard or what she heard. She just said it sounded like a fire cracker,” said Viscuso.

Adding to the mystery, there was no sign of forced entry.

Stover wasn’t sexually assaulted; nothing was taken from her basement apartment.

“I mean she had items at the house that had value that were still there,” said Viscuso.

Over the years, police have combed through cell phone records, executed search warrants and examined DNA, but still, seven years later, a motive is unknown, and a killer remains at large.

“I don’t think anything was ever established as far as a motive. And honestly based on several things we’ve discussed, it’s endless, endless possibilities,” said Viscuso.

Earle: Do you have a suspect or suspects in mind?

Lizzi: Yes. Keep doing a little bit here and talking to people waiting for somebody to point us in the right direction.

And police said they have made some progress, narrowing down the list of potential suspects, and they’re optimistic that one day they’ll be able to catch the killer.

It was a shocking crime that rocked a Beaver County community., every investigator that’s been involved in this case wants. They want to see justice served,” said Viscuso.c

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