3-22-11: Investigators pursuing leads in deaths of Arlington woman, child

Posted Wednesday, Mar. 23, 2011

By Deanna Boyd

ARLINGTON -- The last time Donald Gandy saw his granddaughter, Mechelle Gandy, marked the first time he got to meet his great-grandson, Asher.

"First and only," a distraught Gandy said of his brief visit in January with the little boy, who just turned 1 last month.

On Sunday night, Arlington firefighters responding to a fire at Mechelle Gandy's Presidents Corner apartment in the 2200 block of Presidents Corner Drive found the mother and child dead inside. Gandy died from multiple stab wounds, the Tarrant County medical examiner's office determined.

Linda Anderson, a spokeswoman for the medical examiner's office, said official confirmation of the boy's identity and cause of death was still pending Tuesday.

Tiara Richard, an Arlington police spokeswoman, said investigators were pursuing several leads Tuesday but had not identified a suspect.

"They're just continuing to follow the leads, continue to talk to people who knew her, backtracking and determining who she last spoke with, who she was last with," Richard said.

Donald Gandy said his granddaughter was born in Visalia, Calif., but moved to Texas with her mother.

Arlington school district records show that she attended Arlington High School as a freshman and sophomore.

Her MySpace page indicates that she returned to California for a time, where she finished high school.

A friend, Chris Grant, said he met Mechelle Gandy about six years ago when they worked at a Red Robin restaurant in Grapevine. Later, he said, they worked together at the restaurant's Arlington location, where Gandy was a bartender and server.

"She was magnetic," said Grant, who described Gandy as his best friend. "She drew people in to her. She was very easy to talk to. Everybody loved her."

Grant said he would often hang out with Gandy at her apartment, where she doted on her son.

"She was very loving," Grant said. "She was all about Asher."

Donald Gandy said he is at a loss about who would want to harm her.

"I have no idea other than she's gone," he said. "I know it's under investigation. We're just waiting to see."

If Asher's death is also ruled a homicide, it will mark the sixth slaying of the year in Arlington.

Deanna Boyd, 817-390-7655

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