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Henry County cold case spans 11 years

By Nadia Singh, nsingh@wdbj7.com
Published On: Aug 15 2013 10:12:16 PM EDT
Updated On: Aug 15 2013 11:55:04 PM EDT
HENRY CO., Va. -

A cold case eleven years in the making continues to puzzle police and the citizens of Henry County. Yet, after over a decade, officers there are still getting tips about the Short Family murders.

Today marks the 11th anniversary of the brutal murders of Mike, Mary and Jennifer Short. The husband and wife were found shot to death in their Bassett, Virginia home.

Their 9-year-old daughter, Jennifer, was found weeks later in a North Carolina creek. To this day, the community and law enforcement want justice.

"A community was in shock and it's a shock that's never really left," Henry County Sheriff Lane Perry told Your Hometown News Leader.

Perry remembers the mid-August day in 2002 when Mike and Mary Short were found dead in their home.

"I actually was assigned to the patrol division and one of the things that I was doing was helping with some of the efforts out in the woods " "It's just a very sad, sick feeling. That what kind of beast would do something like?"

The couple's daughter, Jennifer, just nine years old at the time, was found weeks later, floating in this creek in Rockingham County. Something the Henry County community can't let go of.

"I hear everything from rumors about how it happened to what a wonderful child she was. It was such a shock. Its been quite awhile and people are still talking about it," Henry County resident, Hannah Riggs told WDBJ7.

Perry says the community has never forgotten the murders that shook this sleep town, and that he still receives calls from people claiming to have useful information.

"Things pertaining to family history and I will say some things that we didn't know. Since the anniversary has come again, already we're receiving some calls," Perry said.

But mostly, law enforcement want to put this case to bed, so the Short family can finally rest in peace.

"Everyone has an earnest desire to solve the case. One is justice for the little girl and her parents and then see closure for the family."

Justice that can't come soon enough for those the Shorts left behind.