(I thought I published this post days ago, but apparently I only saved it as a draft…)
Last night, my brother called me to ask me if I remembered a Lawrence Donachy from high school. I told him that the name sounded vaguely familiar, but not really, no,
I asked him why, and he told me that he had read in the Pittsburgh paper that Donachy had been arrested for the 1999 murder of Irene Challingsworth.
Nine years ago.
The case kind of rocked my little hometown…there’s not a whole lot of violent crime there. When you did hear about murders, they were usually murder-suicide crimes of passion, usually neatly tied up with very little investigation needed.
Irene Challingsworth owned a beauty shop in her home. Someone broke into her home, presumably sexually assaulted her, and stabbed her three times in the neck.
At the time, I was a reporter for the DuBois Courier-Express. I escaped having to report on the murder itself–perhaps I was already tied up with something else?–and the paper sent another more seasoned reporter to get the story.
I was, though, the person who had to keep following up on the story…who had to keep asking the police if there was any new information, who had to attend press conferences and report that no, there was nothing new to report.
I, like many in my town, assumed this case would go unsolved, but I am very happy that it has been resolved.