The owner of V&W Auto Body in Landover, MD, was found fatally shot in his shop on Jan. 28.
Police say Keith Watson, 48, was already dead when they found him fatally shot by someone who remained at large.
Watson’s Audi A6 was missing, and later found abandoned in the 300 block of Hillside Terrace in Landover, police said. They credited a Crime Solvers tip with helping detectives locate the car.
Prince George’s County police said the murder occurred about 1 p.m. Monday inside Watson’s auto body shop, located on Rainswood Drive in Landover. Law enforcement officials are not certain that stealing the car was the primary motive for the killing. Police are investigating other possibilities, the officials said.
Watson’s wife, Vida Watson, was at a conference in Florida when she got the call that police had circled her husband’s auto body shop in Landover with yellow crime-scene tape, and relatives could not reach him.
“It should not have happened,” Vida Watson said outside her home in Upper Marlboro. “It’s a nice car, but it wasn’t to the point where you have to take somebody’s life to get.”
Vida Watson said her husband had co-owned the shop for about five years, and on Monday, like most days, he was working there. Vida Watson said she got a call from her sister-in-law telling her that police had surrounded the shop and no one could reach her husband.
Vida Watson said she tried to call and text him herself, but he did not respond. When she got on the plane, she knew his car was missing, but it wasn’t until she landed in the Washington area that Keith Watson’s daughter told her what had happened.
“I really lost it,” Vida Watson said. “I just started crying.”
Vida Watson said her husband, who came to the United States from Jamaica about 20 years ago, was a “hard worker” and a loving father to his two children and stepson. He had long worked repairing cars; the two met when he brought one to a shop where she was working to get an alignment done. In his spare time, Keith Watson enjoyed playing dominos.
“He was extremely helpful and generous to everyone,” Vida Watson said. “If you had a need, he’d find a way to fulfill that need for you.”