Murder stuns residents in quiet Boise neighborhood

Murder stuns residents in quiet Boise neighborhood »Play Video
BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- Minnie Blaser lived across the street from Phyliss Ward for thirty years on Randolph Drive. She remembers her friend fondly.

"Hard working gal," said Minnie. "She taught school. The kids just loved her. She was really smart."

Phyliss' death was at first generally thought to be caused by an accidental house fire Monday.

That was bad enough.

But now police say Phyliss Ward, 74, was murdered; killed before the fire by several blows to the head with a blunt instrument.

And that's left Minnie and other neighbors on edge -- and baffled.

"I am. I am," Minnie said. "But we've never had a problem, ever, ever."

Indeed, people who live along Randolph Drive describe the neighborhood as quiet and conservative. The crime is like the end of an innocence.

"It's got us concerned deeply," said neighbor Chet Bowers, "because we wonder whether this is some yo-yo out their who is mentally unbalanced. Was it planned, or a random act? We are deeply concerned and we feel very sorry for the family."

"This is too good of a woman to have this happen," said Minnie. "And I don't have any answers."

One thing that would make these neighbors less nervous is an arrest.

Police are working their investigation, but right now they are not able to comment on details of the probe.