Piedmont Park murder: Atlanta police release 911 call

Wednesday marked a week since the "gruesome" murder of a 40-year-old woman and her dog in Piedmont Park. Atlanta police released the emotional 911 call made by that woman’s partner who made the discovery.

FOX 5 has decided not to provide the full audio of that 911 call which at times can be chilling.

It was just after midnight when surveillance video spotted Katherine Janness walking her partner's dog Bowie along the iconic rainbow crosswalk at 10th Street NE and Piedmont Avenue NE. When she didn’t return home, Janness’ partner, Emma, used her phone to track her to near the entrance of Piedmont Park off 10th Street NE at Charles Allen Drive NE.

Atlanta Police shared a photo taken from a Midtown security camera before Katherine Janness' murder. (Atlanta Police Department)

That’s when Emma placed the 911 call. She could be heard trying to answer the dispatcher’s questions.

911 Operator: "Atlanta 911, Operator 7959, what's the address of your emergency?"

911 Operator: "You said somebody is dead in Piedmont Park?" 

911 Operator: "Where is she at in the Park?" 

911 Operator: "I'm about to call Grady [EMS], okay?"

The 911 operator then quickly turned towards sending the necessary resources.

911 Operator: "She said her girlfriend is dead in the park."

911 Operator: "Yeah, Piedmont Park."

Katherine Janness and her partner Emma (Courtesy of the family)

Within minutes, medics arrived at the scene and pronounced her dead the scene. Police quickly took control of the park, making it a crime scene.

"It's a gruesome scene," Atlanta Police Deputy Chief Charles Hampton Jr. said later that morning. "Upon their arrival, they did, in fact, find a female deceased in the park, appears to be from some type of stab wounds."

Officers combed through the park for evidence and a dive team was brought in to scour Lake Clara Meer, located within the Midtown park.

Katherine Janness with her fiancé's 3-year-old pit bull Bowie (Family photo)

The Midtown community would quickly rally around Janness' family, including her partner Emma who wrote her "world would never be the same" after the deaths.

"She was the most intelligent, kind, humble, and beautiful person I have ever known. I wanted to spend every second with her," said Clark, who had been Janness' partner for 7 years. "He was the sweetest most loyal companion."

But also with the outpouring of love and support was fear and speculation about who her killer was.

This past Saturday, investigators were back out in the park, combing over the same ground to make sure they didn't miss anything the first time and speaking to residents and park-goers.

Tuesday, Atlanta police broke their silence releasing video and images of joggers and park-goers from around the same time Janness was walking her dog. 

"This murder was outside the norm of what we would typically see," Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant said during a press conference Tuesday.

Investigators stressed that none of the people pictured were considered suspects or even persons of interest, but possibly critical witnesses. Investigators are hoping to speak to each of the six people, but a day after the release, it was not clear if any had made contact with police.

Katherine Janness (Courtesy of the Atlanta Police Department)

Police continue to comb through public surveillence video and video submitted by area residents. They also hope an autopsy will render some sort of physical evidence leading to their killer.

The Atlanta Police Department is offering a $10,000 reward which PETA said it will match.

Anyone with information in the case is asked to call the Atlanta Police Homicide Unit at 404-546-4235 or Crime Stoppers at 404-577-8477. Tipsters can remain anonymous and still be eligible for the reward.

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