LUBBOCK, Texas — On May 29, 2000, Texas Tech student Stefanie Hill was headed home from working at Outback Steakhouse. Shortly after arriving to her North Lubbock apartment, authorities responded to a fire at her residence. Upon arrival, first responders discovered Hill’s body. But, her cause of death was blunt force trauma.
Two decades later, the Lubbock Police Department has never named any suspects, or made an arrest.
LPD said the fire at Hill’s apartment destroyed some of the evidence, making it difficult to close in on a suspect. However, witnesses at the scene told police that they saw a man near Hill’s apartment just minutes after the fire was reported.
Stefanie’s best friend at the time, Heath Rosengrants Grubbs, told KLBK in a 2019 interview that she believes the suspect is someone they knew.
“There is somebody out there walking around that took the life of this precious girl,” Grubbs said. “Not in any way paying for what they did to Stef, and that’s infuriating.”
Allison Matherly with the Lubbock Police Department, said Hill’s case is one of Lubbock’s 38 unsolved murders throughout the years.
Matherly said LPD is still actively investigating Hill’s case, and having different detectives view it with a fresh set of eyes.
“Technology is always improving,” Matherly said. “So we can go back and when we have evidence from an older case, sometimes we’re able to retest things. We routinely submit evidence for testing to see if we can find DNA so hopefully we can get a lead out of it.”
Twenty years later, LPD remains confident that someone out there knows what happened to Hill, and is asking for the public’s help to bring the Hill family some closure.
“If you do have something that you do think is important,” Matherly said. “Even though it’s been 20 years, please share that with us because it can be the one piece of information in the puzzle that can potentially lead us forward into solving it.”
If you have any information regarding this case, call crimeline at 741-1000. You can remain anonymous.