No arrests in Frances Davis homicide one year later

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – It’s been a year since someone shot and killed Frances Mae Davis in the parking lot of the Myrtle Beach Mall, and Horry County Police have still not made any arrests in the case. Yet, her family still has not given up on their search for answers.

“It’s hard to believe it’s been a year, when it feels like it was just a few weeks ago,” says Davis’s daughter, Michelle Gagne. Her sister, Shelley Wells, says she still has the last text her mom sent her before they went to the mall last January.
Michelle says she still wakes up every morning, expecting to see her mother at her kitchen table. “Her bedroom’s still the same. all of her stuff’s still there like she left it. The calendar is still on her desk opened to January … uniform’s still hanging on the back of the door for work.”

Shelly was inside the mall when her mother was shot in broad daylight while she sat in her car, exactly a year ago on Sunday. She says she hasn’t been able to sleep well since that day. “I just can’t get rid of the image of finding my mom in the car. Panicking and screaming for somebody to help and call 9-1-1. I still have visions of him telling me to put his hand on her chest, and check her heartbeat, check her pulse.”

Davis’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the mall last March. Though neither can discuss the case, we did reach out to officials at the Myrtle Beach Mall to see if they had made any changes in security. This was their response: “The safety of our shoppers and employees is a top priority. We have a highly trained security staff in place and an excellent working relationship with our local police department.”

However, Davis’s daughters hope others can at least learn from their experience, and take caution. “We go to the store and we still see people sitting in their cars and it’s like what is wrong with you. The world’s just not a safe place anymore.”

ATF is still offering a $10,000 reward in the case, and Davis’s brother is also offering an additional $10,000 for information leading to an arrest. Horry County Police believe there is still hope for justice in this case. “It’s a very frustrating case for us because we’ve exhausted our leads. There’s always a likelihood. It could be a year, it could be several. There’s always somebody out there who has information and sometimes they don’t even know they have it,” says Lt. Raul Denis.