By JOAN MARTELLI and JONEIL ADRIANO
Jan. 2, 2007 — It was an early May morning in 2005, and Patricia McDermott had no reason to expect anything but a typical commute to her job as an X-ray technician.
Riding the No. 33 bus through the predawn streets of Philadelphia, McDermott got off at her regular stop — the post office on the corner of Ninth and Market streets.
She began walking south, toward Pennsylvania Hospital, but she never made it to work. Minutes after she got off the bus, McDermott was discovered lifeless on the street by a passing driver.
Police on the scene were stumped at first. Was it a robbery, an accident or a suicide?
"There was blood on the sidewalk," said Howard Peterman, one of the first detectives to respond. "We looked around for evidence for weapons. No ballistic evidence. We looked up to see if she had jumped from the building. … [There was] no evidence to show us what had happened."
But Peterman noticed something else when he looked up — surveillance cameras mounted all around the post office. read more...