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Woman Stabbed to Death While Jogging in DC's Logan Circle

"It's very scary. We haven't gotten to the bottom to see if this is someone that she knew or exactly what the motive is," the police chief said

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Residents Worried After Jogger Killed in Logan Circle

    Wendy Martinez was stabbed to death while jogging in what police believe was a random attack in D.C.'s Logan Circle area. News4's Darcy Spencer spoke with concerned residents. (Published Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018)

    Update: An arrest has been made in this case. Read the story here.

    A 35-year-old woman jogging in the Logan Circle neighborhood of Northwest D.C. was killed in a brutal stabbing Tuesday evening, and police are still searching for the man who attacked her. 

    Wendy Martinez of Northwest Washington was jogging in the 1400 block of 11th Street NW when she was attacked just before 8 p.m., police say. According to her family, she had just gotten engaged a week earlier. 

    News4 obtained surveillance video that shows Martinez stagger into the Asian American Carryout restaurant and apparently plead for help. She collapsed a short time later. 

    The manager of the restaurant said he heard someone scream and saw Martinez covered in blood. 

    "I scared. I don’t know what happened, and I just try to call police," said the manager, who asked not to be identified. 

    Strangers rushed to the woman's side to help her, and the manager called 911. Martinez died of her injuries a short time later. 

    Police released surveillance video Wednesday afternoon showing the suspect walking along 11th Street NW. Footage from another camera shows him walking with a knife in his hand. 

    The knife used in the stabbing was found nearby. 

    D.C. police chief Peter Newsham said police do not have a motive yet, but the "unsettling" attack was likely random. 

    Wendy Martinez was fatally stabbed near Logan Circle on Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018. She had been jogging along 11th Street NW, police said.
    Photo credit: Metropolitan Police Department

    Police initially said they were looking for as many as three men in connection to the stabbing, but at a news conference Wednesday afternoon, Newsham said investigators believe she was attacked by a single man.

    "You have an incident like this — it's very scary. We haven't gotten to the bottom to see if this is someone that she knew or exactly what the motive is, but it's disturbing," Newsham said. 

    Martinez was an avid runner who lived in an upscale apartment just three blocks away. 

    She and her boyfriend got engaged just last week, her family said in a statement. 

    "Wendy Karina Martinez was the light of our lives. Not only was she an avid runner, but she was a devout Christian, a wonderful friend, and a driven professional. Everything you hope that a daughter and a friend could be," her family said Wednesday. "She was also excited to be planning her upcoming wedding to her fiancé, Daniel Hincapie. They were engaged just last week." 

    "Simply put, Wendy was fearfully and wonderfully made! Now we know she has found the one whom her soul loved. (Song of Solomon 3:4)," the statement said.

    Martinez's family asked for respect for their privacy as they grieve and urged anyone with information on her killing to contact police.

    Martinez was chief of staff of the software and data company FiscalNote.

    "The entire FiscalNote family is shocked and deeply saddened to learn that Wendy Martinez, our Chief of Staff, was killed last night," the company said in a tweet Wednesday afternoon. "Wendy was an invaluable member of our team and a vibrant member of the community. Our thoughts and prayers are with Wendy’s family and friends."

    Martinez was a University of Florida and Georgetown University graduate who previously worked for the Organization of American States and the Inter-American Development Bank, according to her LinkedIn page.

    The crime rate in the area near Logan Circle is relatively low, with few violent crimes reported, D.C. crime statistics show. A number of upscale homes and trendy restaurants are located near the scene of the crime.

    The attack left other joggers in the area stunned. 

    "As a runner, it's pretty terrifying. You'd think running on lit streets, you would be safe, but that’s mind-boggling," one woman said. 

    Another woman who jogs in the area brought flowers to the crime scene Wednesday morning, telling News4 that the victim easily could have been her.

    Anyone who can help police is asked to call 202-727-9099.