Questions remain in 1983 triple homicide, police ask for public's help

By Megan Kennedy - Digital News Editor
Crime Stoppers

Frances Ivey was one of three women gunned down inside a real estate office in August 1983. Houston police are asking anyone with information in the case to come forward.

HOUSTON - Three people were shot the evening of Aug. 19, 1983. Two were already dead when police arrived. A third, Frances Ivey, died later at an area hospital. 

All three of the victims were women, according to an old news clipping from the Houston Post. 

The Houston Police Department's Cold Case Homicide Unit is hoping to find answers to the many questions that remain in the case. The unit issued a news release on Wednesday, asking for the public's help in solving the crime. 

The unknown killers robbed and shot the three women at the Shumate and Co. Realtors office building at 16007 Memorial Drive in Houston, according to the Houston Post. The victims were found on the floor in the front office reception area of the building. 

The women were identified by the Houston Post as Elizabeth Shumate, 50, president of the real estate company, Joanne Brown, 46, and Ivey, who died at Hermann Hospital. 

Shumate's hands were bound behind her back, the Houston Post reported. The bodies were found by a temporary office employee, the article said. No bullet casings were recovered.

"The material used to tie Shumate's hands 'looked like a new, white cord -- the kind you can use for almost anything,'" the Houston Post quoted Lt. B.J. Beck at the time. 

Jewelry was also stolen from the victims during the robbery. 

Ivey's family is expected to speak Friday about the case.

Crime Stoppers may pay up to $5,000 for information leading to the charging and/or arrest of the killer(s) in this case. Information may be reported by calling 713-222-TIPS (8477), submitted online at or through the Crime Stoppers mobile app. All tipsters remain anonymous. 

Copyright 2019 by KPRC Click2Houston - All rights reserved.