Cold Case: Joy Blanchard's Daughter Wants Justice

By: Malorie Maddox, Jeff Olson Email
By: Malorie Maddox, Jeff Olson Email

Her mother was murdered after a birthday party. Joy Blanchard's daughter hopes someone will step forward to help catch her mother's killer.

Sarah Pithan says, "It was a pretty normal Friday night."

November 5, 2007. Joy Blanchard threw a birthday party in her home at 45th & F.

Sarah says, "I left around 11:30 or so..."

A few hours later, Joy Blanchard, Sarah's mother was dead. She was found face down, stabbed to death in her own home.

Sarah says, "Your world is just flipped upside down."

Sarah says her mother was known for always throwing parties. "She just created this family of friends...local artists and musicians."

Joy was an artist, too. She had just started painting. Sarah cherishes her work.

"We talked everyday. Sometimes two or three times a day."

Sarah was at the party the night of the murder. She and Joy's friends left by midnight. Within hours, her mother was dead.

Sarah says, "We do believe it was somebody that she knew."

Sarah has kept in contact with Omaha Police the past five years. She hopes an arrest will be made in her mother's death.

Sgt. Teresa Negron, with Omaha Police says, "There have been no new leads that have come to our attention."

Sgt. Negron says the Omaha Police Cold Case Unit is actively looking at around seven or eight cases right now. Blanchard's is one of them.

"There are people who we believe know exactly what occurred and over time it wears on their soul." said Sgt. Negron.

Five years later, Sarah struggles with the fact that her mother isn't there to watch her granddaughter, Devlin, grow up.

Sarah says, "I saw that bond, and I've never seen my mom light up like that for somebody else."

Sarah hopes by sharing her mother's story, someone will know something about this case and come forward. She hopes the suspect has talked to someone about this crime.

Sgt. Negron says Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer added two detectives and a sergeant to the Cold Case Unit back in October.

They recently solved a murder from 1980.

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