Funeral Friday for Avanell Cowgill; Investigation Continues

Friday morning family and friends are gathering for the funeral of 79-year-old murder victim, Avanell Cowgill.

Police said the widow was found brutally murdered in her East Dallas home last weekend.

Cowgill’s friends and neighbors are still searching for answers and hope pictures released by the police of men using her credit cards provide new leads.

“Help them catch whoever did this to that poor woman. It’s just awful this had to happen.  I’m very glad this had to come out,” said Jo Watson, Cowgill's neighbor.

Watson is relieved to see the new Wal-Mart store surveillance video released by the Dallas police Thursday afternoon. Investigators are trying to track down a man recorded in the video that they said used Cowgill’s credit card for a shopping spree on March 8, the day before she was discovered murdered in her home.

“I hope they get caught. She deserved closure on this. Not them getting away, running around using her credit cards,” said neighbor and long-time friend, Robert Dodson.

Police also released pictures from an ATM taken March 7. In the photos, a man can be seen using Cowgill’s cards at about 11 p.m., some 7 hours after Cowgill had left church and was last seen alive.

“I can’t believe they killed her. She would have given them her purse. They didn’t have to do that,” said Dodson.

Police aren’t calling the men in the videos killers, but say they want to talk to the men about how they got Cowgill’s cards.

Earlier in the week, homicide detectives released other surveillance pictures from various stores.  In one, the man is wearing the same clothes that were worn in Wal-Mart while in others he is in other clothing.  He is described as 6 feet tall and weighing about 250 lbs.

There are also pictures of a second man, with a smaller build, standing about 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighing about 160 lbs.

Police said the men were also seen driving an older, silver 4-door compact car that is missing a back right hubcap.

“Whether they were involved in her murder of not, they should still pay the consequences,” said Watson.

Anyone with information about the men is asked to call Detective Sayers at 214-671-3647. There is a reward for up to $15,000 for information leading to an arrest and indictment of the person responsible for Cowgill's murder.

Contact Us