updated 3/16/2006 5:30:01 AM ET 2006-03-16T10:30:01

A Child Protective Services program director whose body was found along a country road had received threats related to her work, police said.

Family members reported Sally Blackwell missing after she didn’t show up for work Tuesday morning. County employees found her body Wednesday.

Police Lt. Mike Hernandez said the case was being investigated as a homicide. He acknowledged that Blackwell had received work-related threats but would not elaborate, the Victoria Advocate reported Thursday.

CPS investigates reports of abuse and neglect of children, and, if necessary, places them in foster care.

Blackwell, 53, was hired at CPS as a caseworker in the department’s Cuero office in 1990, and became a supervisor in 1998, agency spokesman Patrick Crimmins said.

In 2001, she was promoted to program director in Victoria, where she oversaw 46 caseworkers, their supervisors and support staff in nine counties.

Crimmins said in a statement that CPS employees are trained to deal with hostile clients and how to manage their personal security when visiting homes.

Blackwell’s family is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to the killer’s conviction, said her niece, Holly Tachovsky.

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