As far as police and their families can determine, Tamekia Taylor and Jennifer Clemmings did not know each other and had none of the same friends.
Police want to know whether they had the same killer. They hope renewed publicity and a new reward offer will help them crack the two cases.
Both Taylor, 27, and Clemmings, 32, were stabbed to death in their homes. There was no sign of forced entry in either home, located about five miles apart in eastern DeKalb, south of Stone Mountain.
Taylor was found dead Dec. 6, 2002. Clemmings was killed Jan. 27, 2003. Both were college graduates and had successful careers.
The strongest lead in either case is a tape recording from an answering machine of a friend of Clemmings. Clemmings apparently was able to dial the friend's phone number, and the answering machine captured the voice of a man demanding money.
Detective D.A. Fonseca said the conversation indicates Clemmings knew the man, but police have not been able to identify him.
Fonseca said police are not sure whether the cases are related.
Relatives and police held a news conference last week to announce $5,000 rewards in each case for information leading to a conviction. The reward is offered by the Carole Sund/Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation.
"We want closure and we want justice. . . . It's been two years of pure hell for our family," said a sister of Clemmings, Karen Frazier.
Taylor's father, Matthew Taylor, said, "I can't bring my daughter back," but he urged people to get involved to prevent future crimes.
"Your child is out there, and so is the person who did this to my child," he said.
Tamekia Taylor grew up in Charleston, S.C., and majored in English at the University of South Carolina before deciding to go into mortgage banking. She worked for Wachovia and then for Chase Manhattan in Atlanta.
Clemmings' family moved from Jamaica to Michigan when she was young. She earned a degree in international business from Ferris State University and moved to metro Atlanta in the early 1990s. She became an independent senior sales executive with Mary Kay cosmetics, running a unit of 56 other sales people and three times earning one of the famous Mary Kay cars given to top performers.
Anyone with information about either case should call CrimeStoppers at 404-577-8477.
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