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Neighbors fearful after woman found dead in her backyard

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Indianapolis Metropolitan police are on the search for clues after a woman was found dead in her backyard on Wednesday morning. Neighbors on the east side told FOX59 on Wednesday night they are worried, because there is a killer on the streets.

Police identified that victim on Wednesday afternoon at Nell Freeman Gladney, 58, of Indianapolis. Her family said she had two jobs and worked very hard.

"She was an awful nice lady," said Rickey Jett, one of Gladney's neighbors.

Jett lives a few doors down from Gladney's home, a place that as of Wednesday morning, became a crime scene. Jett said though the death is tragic, he is not surprised.

"There's violence in this neighborhood," said Jett, "I keep both doors locked all the time, keep an eye on everybody."

It was behind Gladney's house where neighbor Jeffery Stokes saw her body and called police on Wednesday morning. Detectives on the scene told FOX59 there was evidence of forced entry to the garage and that Gladney appeared dressed and ready to go to work for the day.

Investigators said it was possible the victim could've run into a burglar.

In the hours since and even Wednesday night, IMPD said they are saturating the area, talking to neighbors and looking for leads.

"What our commander was able to do this morning when it occurred, he was able to add more boots on the ground in that area," said Rafael Diaz, with IMPD.

Neighbors told police they heard gunshots between the hours of four and five this morning, but nobody called it in.

At a monthly crime meeting on the east side on Wednesday night, IMPD stressed to residents that overall crime in the east district is down over the past three years.

"Our partnership with you seems to be paying off," said Commander James Waters with IMPD.

Still, an important part police want to preach, is picking up the phone when something does not appear right.

"They are our eyes and ears out on the street, because they live there," said Diaz.

Police ask anyone with information about this case to call Crimestoppers of Central Indiana at (317) 262-TIPS.

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