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Mother of 6 found dead in Richmond brush

RICHMOND, Va. -- A woman, whose body was found in thick brush in an alley between Decatur and Hull Streets in Richmond, had her throat slit and clothing tattered, Crime Insider sources told Jon Burkett.

The woman's name is Dawn West, her family confirmed.

West was found Wednesday morning in an alley behind the Verizon building on Hull Street. The gruesome discovery was made by a woman who asked CBS 6 to hide her identity.

"I came outside [and] there was yellow tape all over the place," the woman said.

West, a mother of six, was found with knife wounds, Crime Insider sources told Burkett.

"I'm so sorry about what happened to her. I didn't know her, but I'm praying for her family and sorry no one helped her," the woman who found her said. "I'm a grandma of two, and mother of two, so of course, I'm concerned."

The woman also said that just last week, someone "sketchy" knocked on her door.

"They knocked and shouted, ‘This is your warning!" She said it scared her, so she called the police, who attributed the knock to transients who frequent the area behind her home.

"During the weekend, this place is off the hook. They need more lighting and community help for the homeless,” she said.

Police are trying to piece together a timeline surrounding West's murder.

Crime Insider sources said she was last heard from around 1:30 Wednesday morning, about six hours before her body was found.

Friends said she was a loving mom who would do anything for friends and family, and that they are devastated by the sudden loss.

The pastor hopes the city will come to clear the alley and put up lights. And she’s hoping someone will come forward and help police.

This is a developing story. Witnesses can send news tips, photos and video here.