The manhunt for the person who shot and killed an Alexandria woman at her home Thursday continues.
Beloved music teacher and long-time resident Ruthanne Lodato, 59, was fatally shot after a knock at her door around 11:30 a.m. Investigators believe an older man with a white beard pulled a gun out and fired repeatedly when the door opened. A woman who worked as a caregiver for an elderly family member was also shot, but survived.
“We will all miss Ruthanne every day in many, many different ways,” says John Kelly, a neighbor and friend.
Many in the North Ridge neighborhood are in fear.
“It is understandable to be frightened in these circumstances,” Chief Earl Cook of the Alexandria Police Department said at a press conference Friday.
There is still no motive in Thursday’s shooting, and police have not found any apparent connection between the victims and the suspect.
Police acknowledge striking similarities between this killing and two other unsolved murders in Alexandria: Nancy Dunning was shot inside her home a decade ago. Just a few months ago, Ron Kirby was shot in his home. Both shootings happened during the afternoon and are relatively close in proximity.
“Residents have a right to be concerned, but I don’t want to characterize it that there is a serial killer floating around this city,” says Alexandria Mayor William Euille.
“I got scared,” says Sophie Normal Haist. “It is so bizarre. This shouldn’t be happening. That is just crazy.”