A 40-year-old LGBTQ woman and bartender at a popular Midtown restaurant was stabbed and killed early Wednesday as she walked her dog in Piedmont Park.
Crime Stoppers is offering a $10,000 reward for information helping Atlanta police solve the murder of Katherine Janness. Her body – along with her dog Bowie, who was also killed in the attack – was found near the 10th Street and Charles Allen Drive entrance to the park about 1 a.m. Janness’ wife discovered the bodies after she tracked Janness’ cellphone to the park, according to WSB. The couple live within a mile of the park.
Janness was stabbed repeatedly in what a veteran homicide detective described to WSB as an out-of-the-ordinary and “gruesome scene.”
On Thursday, Atlanta police asked for the public’s help. Police also released an image of Janness walking her dog across the rainbow crosswalks at the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue captured on a security camera before she was killed.
“She was last seen walking her dog in Midtown Atlanta,” police spokesperson Officer Steve Avery said in a press release. “The victim and her dog were killed inside the park. Anyone with information is asked to call APD Homicide.”
Callers to Atlanta police (404-546-4235) or Crime Stoppers (404-577-TIPS) can remain anonymous, Avery said.
Emma Clark, Janness’ partner of nearly six years, wrote that she “lost the love of my life” in a Facebook post late Wednesday.
“Today I lost the love of my life and my baby boy. It was tragic. She was the most intelligent, kind, humble, and beautiful person I have ever known. I wanted to spend every second with her. He was the sweetest most loyal companion,” Clark wrote.
“My heart is so very broken, my world will never be the same. Thank you to everyone who has reached out. It is truly appreciated,” Clark added.
Janness was a bartender at Campagnolo, an LGBTQ-owned Italian restaurant on Piedmont Avenue near the rainbow crosswalks. The restaurant’s owner declined to discuss Janness or the homicide with Project Q Atlanta.
By Thursday morning, some 200 donors contributed more than $11,000 to a Go Fund Me campaign to help with expenses in the wake of Janness’ death.