Although she died of multiple stab wounds to the chest, Philadelphia police detectives are "leaning" toward the conclusion that Ellen Rae Greenberg committed suicide, a police spokesman said Saturday.

Lt. Raymond Evers emphasized that the case is still wide open, but he said he wanted to assure residents of Greenberg's Manayunk neighborhood that there wasn't "a maniac on the loose."

He said of investigators: "They're taking their time; they're not going to rush it."

Greenbeg, 27, a first-grade teacher at Juniata Park Academy, was found dead about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in her apartment at the Venice Loft Condominiums at 4601 Flat Rock Rd., near Main Street.

The medical examiner's office at first reported the death as a homicide. But Evers said evidence had surfaced - "I can't really discuss it" - that made suicide more likely.

Greenberg was found in the apartment by her fiance, who called police. Evers said other residents of the building heard no commotion.

Evers said detectives were looking into some "mental issues" that Greenberg may have had.

Greenberg seemed to have everything going for her - a teaching career she cared deeply about, a close family, and a summer wedding to plan.

Pat Mazzuca, former principal of Juniata Park, chose Greenberg to help start the school four years ago.

"She was very dedicated to the kids," Mazzuca said, "very organized . . . very, very much concerned about her students who were not achieving."

Contact staff writer Tom Infield at 610-313-8205 or