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Decatur murder still a cold case 20 years late; Victim’s mother still wants answers

“As far as hope, you almost have to accept the fact that there may not ever be a resolution and you might not ever have answers or closure,”
Published: Nov. 23, 2021 at 7:08 PM CST
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DECATUR, Ala. (WAFF) - Two decades later, a cold case remains unsolved. Investigators continue to search for answers in the 2001 death of 29-year-old Josiah Mathews at the RaceTrac gas station near the I-65 overpass.

The building is now demolished, but Josiah’s mother Mary Mathews will never forget it.

“Even though it’s been 20 years and yes I would like to have some answers to what actually happened, but it’s not gonna bring him back,” said Mathews.

Mathews says her son lived in Athens and worked at the RaceTrac and had only been there a few months. He was filling in on a night shift when he was robbed and shot just before 1 a.m.

“You know if nothing else, he saved, Josiah saved someone else’s life by working that night,” said Mathews.

Mathews says after the murders, investigators got some tips, but nothing was ever verified.

“They did the best they could you know they just, with what they had, they just didn’t have a whole lot to go on,” said Mathews.

According to our news partners at the Decatur Daily, Detective Sean Mukaddam from the Decatur Police Department says the biggest downfall they had, in this case, was the limited technology at the time.

“As far as hope, you almost have to accept the fact that there may not ever be a resolution and you might not ever have answers or closure,” said Mathews.

Mathews says Josiah’s murder has been difficult on everyone. And if there’s someone still out there who did this, she wants them off the streets.

“I don’t want to see anyone else get hurt or to ever has to go through this cause it’s not, it’s just not something that’s supposed to happen,” said Mathews.

Decatur Police are also working to close two other unsolved murders.

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