South Sound News

Family searching for answers about woman's suspicious death

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The family of a woman who was found unresponsive near her Olympia apartment says they want justice.

Yvonne McDonald died hours after she was found in someone's yard on Aug. 7.

Weeks later, her death was ruled as suspicious.

McDonald’s family, who believes she was murdered, is frustrated that it took so long for the coroner's office to come up with the ruling in the first place.

Flowers still cover the spot where she was found.

Anybody would want to know what happened to their loved one … anybody,” said McDonald’s niece, Talauna Martin. “Something’s not right here. Something is not right here.”

It’s been more than two weeks since McDonald was found on the steps of a vacant home, barely alive. The 56-year-old was just steps from home.  Her clothes had been torn of off her.

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Her family says there’s only one thing that could have happened.

“I believe she was murdered. There’s not a shadow of a doubt,” said Martin.

On Friday, the Thurston County coroner announced that McDonald’s death was sudden, unexpected and suspicious, but ruled out sexual assault and other violent possibilities the family suspected.

“Somebody hurt her bad. Somebody hurt her bad. Bruises everywhere,” said Martin.

Olympia police say detectives are taking the case seriously and asked for the public’s patience as they figure out how McDonald died, and why.

“It sounds like the family would just like the city do a little more intense investigation,” said Olympia neighbor John Lane.

Dozens gathered at a vigil last week, where the community raised questions and concerns about the investigation and remembered a life that was cherished in the community.

“There were a lot of people that came here and dropped flowers,” said Lane.

“The biggest side is finding out who did this to her,” said Martin.

The coroner’s office says the autopsy and toxicology results will be key to figuring out how McDonald died.

Anyone with information about McDonald’s death is asked to call Olympia police.