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Woman Suspected In Rolling Hills Estates Mall Murder Released

LYNWOOD (CBSLA)  — A woman named as the suspect in the murder of a retired nurse at a Rolling Hills Estates mall has been released and District Attorney’s Office held off on filing a case against her, pending further investigation.
Cherie Townsend, 39, was covered with a blanket as she walked out of a women’s detention facility in Lynwood Tuesday morning, accompanied by a man and two women who wore hoodies over their heads. She was released at about 6:30 a.m. but did not leave the facility for about an hour.

#BREAKING : Rolling Hills Estates stabbing suspect Cherie Townsend just released from the women’s jail days after arrest for murder, walks out covered in a blanket to waiting car @CBSLA
— JASMINE VIEL (@jasmineviel) May 22, 2018

She is suspected in the death of Susan Leeds of Rancho Palos Verdes, who was found stabbed and her throat cut in her Mercedes SUV, which was parked in the garage of the Promenade of the Peninsula in Rolling Hills Estates.
Townsend had been jailed on $2 million bail. She’s also the second person to be arrested, then released, in the case – the morning after Leeds’ death, a transient who matched the description of a man captured on surveillance video right around the time of the murder was taken into custody. He was not charged in the case, but arrested later on an unrelated charge.
The sheriff’s department said it was not unusual for prosecutors to request additional information.
“The focus of our investigation has absolutely not changed. The investigation has progressed,” according to the sheriff’s department.

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