Police capt. James Clark, head of homicides, discusses the murder of Debra Gulliver. (Hayden Mitman)

The Philadelphia Police are seeking witnesses who can help solve the brutal killing of a woman found near a Strawberry Mansion school. 

 

During a press conference held on Monday, Philadelphia Police Homicide Captain James Clark said that the police have a $20,000 reward for the information leading to the capture of the individual responsible for the weekend murder of 31-year-old Debra Gulliver, 33, of the 2500 block of N. 25th Street. Gulliver was found near Murrell Dobbins CTE High School. Two men who called police to the scene fled when officers arrived.

 

According to the captain, after spending time out with friends in Kensington, at about 2:30 a.m., on Saturday, June 24, Gulliver got off a bus near the intersection of 21st Street and Lehigh Avenue and walked through a park behind Murrell Dobbins CTE High School.

 

It was a walk she’d taken many times in the past, said the captain. However, sometime between 2:30 and 3 a.m., as she walked through that park, Dobbins was assaulted. She was beaten on her head and stabbed “in excess of twelve times,” said Clark.

 

She was pronounced dead at the scene, the captain said.

“We don’t know if it was random or if she was targeted,” said the captain.

Clark said they don’t know if she was robbed – as they don’t know what she might have been carrying prior to her murder – and the police are also uncertain if she was sexually assaulted. Her pants were half off when she was found, Clark said, but they are waiting on tests to know for sure.

At least three individuals called police that night, Clark said. One was a male who claimed to have been robbed by two men that same evening in that park. Clark said he wasn’t sure if he believed the man’s story of being robbed and the male is still being questioned by police.

“We are still looking into his story,” said Clark. “We aren’t sure if it happened that way."

Also, two other males called police to report finding Gulliver’s body that night, but Clark said. Both waited until police arrived, then left without talking to police.

“They are witnesses,” he said.

Clark said he’s hoping these two men come forward to help detectives investigate the crime.