KCSO names person of interest in killing of Bakersfield woman

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It has been more than a month since a 66-year-old woman was bludgeoned to death in her home southeast of Bakersfield. The sheriff’s department released little information at the time. 

For the last month, we’ve been asking, what happened to Suzanne Hill-Martindale? Friends and family have shared their suspicions and concerns. 

The sheriff’s department hasn’t responded to our questions about her death, until now — with a vague news release naming a person of interest — leaving friends wanting answers. 

Friends said Suzanne Hill-Martindale didn’t get out much. A caretaker discovered her body June 27 inside a home on a small ranch on Malaga Road. The coroner couldn’t determine how long her body had been there. 

The sheriff’s department said her 65-year-old brother, Raymond Hill, was one of the last people to see her alive. 

Sherry McKinn said she last heard from Raymond a week before the body was discovered. McKinn said she gathered a search party to look for Raymond about a week after his sister’s murder. Their search was unsuccessful.

Deputies now say they too are looking for Raymond, calling him a person of interest in the killing of his sister.

McKinn said the adult siblings lived under the same roof — locked in a bitter feud over their parents estate. Court records show Suzanne filed a restraining order against her brother in March. The case was dismissed. 

McKinn said Raymond wasn’t the only other person living in the home at the time of the murder. She said Suzanne’s internet boyfriend moved in earlier this year. Deputies haven’t said if that man is a person of interest, or if they’ve contacted him during their investigation. 

Raymond Hill drives a white 1998 Ford F150. It has a California license plate with the disabled emblem. The plate number is 0820NDP. 

Anyone with information on his whereabout is encouraged to call KCSO at 861-3110, or to remain anonymous, call secret witness at 322-4040.

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