Family pleads for answers after woman found stabbed to death in St. Pete alley

St. Petersburg police say a reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest after a woman was found stabbed to death in an alley on Friday, March 17. 

Police say Jona Waller, 34, was last seen early Friday morning with a brown, colorful blanket. She was later found dead in the alley south of the 200 block of 37th Street North, and investigators say she was pronounced dead at the scene.

"We know that she was sighted in the early morning hours of Friday, but then there’s a window of several hours that we have no information about her whereabouts," St. Pete Police Department spokesman Ken Knight said.

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As of Tuesday afternoon, police say there are no persons of interest in the case. It leaves a grieving family without answers and without their loved one. 

"I think it’s a dream. I’m waiting to wake up and the reality, she’ll come walking through the door," Jona's mother Patricia Suggs-Walker said.

Jona’s family says the last several days have been a nightmare.

"Jona Joy Waller," John Waller, Jona’s father, said. "Joy was the name that I gave her. I gave her that for a reason. She brought joy to us. To me."

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Her family says she was a mother to two girls, ages three and five. Her mother described her as a good daughter. 

"Very, very sweet, loving, kind girl," Suggs-Walker said. "You couldn’t help but love her because her nature was just that sweet. She was a good daughter."

Jona’s mother says she spoke with her daughter the day before her death and had no reason to believe anything was wrong.

"Every day, she would call, and when I didn’t get a call on Friday, I felt something was wrong," Suggs-Walker said.

She says she would often hang out with people in the area of 37th Street North. Suggs-Walker said they hope the person responsible comes forward, so they can get closure and justice for Waller. 

"I’m going to fight until I get justice for her," Patricia Suggs-Walker said. "I will not rest on this earth until I get justice for my daughter."

"I need to find out what happened to my baby," Patricia Suggs-Walker said. "I need to know what happened to her."

Anyone with information is asked to contact the St. Pete Police Department or Crime Stoppers.