Grandmother Of 11-Year-Old Victim Reacts To News Of Arrest: “I Got Hit With A Ton Of Bricks.”

Posted at 10:39 PM, Apr 21, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-21 22:39:48-04

CONSTANTINE, Mich. (April 21, 2014) – Nearly seven years after 11-year-old Jodi Parrack was found murdered in a cemetery in St. Joseph County an arrest has been made in the case.

Raymond McCann, who police said was an original person-of-interest and a reserve police officer, has been charged with perjury.

The mystery surrounding Parrack’s murder has consumed her grandmother over the past 7-years.

“I just shut down,” said Linda Allbaugh, Jodi’s grandmother.  “I was here.  I wanted to be here.  For her.  Her voice.  I hear her.  I see her fishing, casting a line.”

After Jodi’s death, Allbaugh made routine visits to the cemetery where she was found.

“For a couple years, they probably recognized my car,” said Allbaugh.  “I would drive in the front side, drive in the back side, go up and down where they found the body and think, was she alive before they took her into the cemetery?  Did they kill her in the cemetery?  And where they found her body, they could see the front door of where she lived.”

She said she’s always felt that her granddaughter’s killer was close.

“Back when it first happened I just felt, it’s here,” she said.  “The person is here.”

So to hear that McCann, a reserve police officer at the time of Jodi’s death and a father to one of Jodi’s friends, had been arrested on perjury charges only worked to confirm her feelings.

“It was like I got hit with a ton of bricks,” she said.  “It was like, wow.”

Parrack’s aunt, Kristy Pearson, relayed a statement to FOX17 on behalf of Parrack’s mother.  Pearson said the family was glad that someone had been caught and hope this is just the beginning.  Pearson said, “We all need to process the information and we are in close contact with the McCann family.”

McCann’s sister-in-law, she said she had a feeling this day would come.

“We don’t have any real contact with him since all of this happened.  He separated himself from us completely, even his mom and that raises concerns,” said Julie McCann.

She, like Parrack’s family, just wants to know the truth.

“I don’t believe that he could have committed the murder,” said McCann’s sister-in-law.  “I don’t understand how he could withhold any information for so long.”

Now, after all these years, she’s hopeful they’re closer than ever before to those answers.

“I think he knows something and I think it needs to be told and I think we need justice for Jodi,” said Julie McCann.

Others throughout this community said a lot has changed in the seven years since her death.  Some said the community has a lost a little trust with one another knowing this murder has gone unsolved.  They are hopeful this arrest will start to heal those old wounds.