County and Village detectives continue to work with the Westchester District Attorney and the County Forensic laboratory to build a case for homicide in the murder of Jennifer Katz in her Mamaroneck home on Dec. 30.
“As with any case, there has to be enough evidence to support a charge and the more evidence you have, the stronger the case,” said Mamaroneck Village detective Sandra DiRuzza today.
DA spokesman Lucian Chalfen said only, “It remains an active investigation.”
For many in the community, the case against Reginald Powell, now before a Grand Jury, seems open and shut. Charged only with felony burglary, (see the complaint here ) Powell is the only known suspect in the stabbing death of 49 year old Katz, who was found stabbed and in a closet i. Katz is the mother of two daughters in Mamaroneck schools. the Grand Jury is expected to issue a report within a month,
The felony complaint charges Powell only with entering Katz’s shingled blue house at 615 Baldwin Place sometime “between 9:00 am December 28 and 9:30 pm” December 30. At 9:20 pm December 30, Powell was arrested for making an illegal turn in New York City; he was with Katz’s car and four pieces of her jewelry, three gold rings and a silver ring. Katz’s body was discovered in Mamaroneck by police at 11:00 pm that night.
Two bags of heroin were also in the car with Powell. The Journal News reported Powell passed a drug test by his parole supervisors only two days before he was arrested.
As we reported earlier, sources say there is a second suspect being looked at closely.
Katz was home alone at the time of the slaying, while her children were with their father, from whom she was divorced, and who lives in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Katz dated Reginald Powell’s brother, Warren Powell, a Village Sanitation worker, for about two years, according to reports. It is believed Reginald Powell did some work as a handyman at Katz’s house. Another brother, Wayne, is Bishop at Mamaroneck’s Strait Gate Church.
Katz, worked locally both at at Larchmont Vision Care at 110 Chatsworth Avenue in Larchmont, and at Larchmont’s Vintage Kidz, on the Post Road.
“Jennifer had an infectious smile and always a kind word,” said Carolynn Dilwort, owner of Auray Gourmet in Larchmont. “I will miss her smiling eyes and her warm spirit.”
A scholarship fund has been set up for Katz’s two daughters. Contributions can be made to the Friends of Jennifer Katz Scholarship, 180 E. Prospect Avenue, Mamaroneck, NY 10543.
The slaying is the first homicide in Mamaroneck since 36-year-old letter carrier Stephen Spina was found dead with multiple stab wounds in his Richbell Road apartment in September 2007. Spina’s murder remains unsolved.