TV Anchorwoman Dies After Beating
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Oct. 26) - An
Arkansas television anchorwoman died
Saturday, several days after she didn’t answer
her wake-up call and was found beaten
in her home, hospital officials said.
Anne Pressly, 26, died at St. Vincent Infirmary
Medical Center, hospital spokeswoman
Margaret Preston said.
In a statement released by the hospital,
Pressly’s parents, Guy and Patti Cannady,
asked for privacy as they grieved.
“It was our hope, as was yours, that Anne
would overcome the injuries inflicted upon
her in the brutal attack at her home,” the
statement read. “We were with her in her
last moments, and although our hearts are
broken, we are at the same time comforted
by our faith knowing that Anne is now with
our heavenly father.”
Pressly was beaten around the head, face
and neck. She had been unable to communicate
with her family or police while being
kept sedated in the intensive care unit.
The anchor’s death came only a day after a
doctor said he was encouraged that her vital
signs were stable while she remained in
critical condition. Dr. Clifton R. Johnson
told reporters Friday that swelling in
Pressly’s brain had gone down since being
hospitalized and that doctors had slowly
been reducing her sedative dosages.
She was discovered Monday morning a
half-hour before she was to appear on ABC
affiliate KATV’s “Daybreak” program. Her
mother went to her home after she didn’t
answer her regular wake-up call.
Police have yet to identify a suspect, though
detectives have combed the area around
Pressly’s home in the Heights neighborhood
— a mix of bungalows and mansions
near the Little Rock Country Club. News reports
have said detectives found evidence
that Pressly’s credit card was used Monday
at a gas station a few miles from her home.
Sgt. Cassandra Davis, a police spokeswoman,
has said investigators suspect
Pressly was the victim of a random attack.
Davis did not return a call for comment
Pressly was a native of Greenville, S.C., and
moved with her family to Little Rock while
she was in high school. She was a graduate
of Rhodes College in Memphis, Tenn.
She had a small role in the new Oliver Stone
movie “W.,” which was filmed in Shreveport,
La. She appears briefly as a conservative
commentator who speaks favorably of
President Bush’s “Mission Accomplished”
event on an aircraft carrier shortly after the
start of the Iraq war.
On Saturday, KATV opened its nightly
news cast with a seven-minute segment devoted
to Pressly. Anchor Pamela Smith told
viewers that Pressly’s family agreed to have
their daughter be an organ donor. Smith’s
voice hitched as she read condolences sent
into the station, her eyes red.
“She owned every room she was in, not because
she demanded our attention, but because
we willingly gave it to her,” Smith
said. “We all felt a little better, a little more
alive just being near her.
“Life was easy for Anne Pressly. But it is her
death that is so very hard for all of us.”
A reward fund KATV set up to help find the
killer or killers has reached $30,000, the
station reported on its Web site Saturday
No funeral arrangements were immediately
Please pray for her family - this is a devistating blow. She was very young, and they have no leads. ~ Phyllis