Alexandria Police Close Several Streets for Evidence Search

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Northern Virginia Bureau chief Julie Carey reports on a police recruit grid search in the murder investigation of Ruthanne Lodato. (Published Tuesday, Feb 11, 2014)

    Several streets in Alexandria were closed for much of the day Tuesday as police searched for evidence linked to the death of a well-known music teacher.

    The following intersections in the area of Ridge Road Drive were shut down:

    Evidence Search in Alexandria Shooting

    [DC] Evidence Search in Alexandria Shooting
    Several streets in Alexandria will be closed for much of the day Tuesday as police search for evidence linked to the death of a well-known music teacher. (Published Tuesday, Feb 11, 2014)

    • Ridge Road Drive and Braddock Road: No northbound traffic on Ridge Road Drive
    • Circle Terrance and Central Avenue: No southbound traffic on Central Avenue and no northbound on Circle Terrace
    • Farm Road and Virginia Avenue: No southbound traffic on Farm Road
    • Ridge Road Drive and Virginia Avenue: No southbound traffic on Ridge Road Drive

    Authorities said the road closures helped them preserve the scene for a search by officers and police academy recruits. Officers are not searching the area for the gunman.

    Police said Tuesday's search is not a new one; they searched the same area right after the shooting. This time, they used more manpower. Eighty cadets walked shoulder-to-shoulder to complete a grid search. 

    Detectives and officers spent Monday canvassing Lodato's neighborhood and passing out fliers featuring a sketch of the man believed to be responsible for killing her and injuring another woman.

    Police also collected additional evidence from the home, including a large door wrapped in black paper and crime tape.

    According to investigators, the shooter knocked on Lodato's door in the 2400 block of Ridge Road Drive just after 11:30 a.m. Feb. 6 and opened fire. Lodato and her mother's caregiver were shot.

    Lodato was taken to a hospital in critical condition and later pronounced dead. The surviving woman was shot in the arm and hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.

    Lodato's mother was also inside the home during the shooting, but was not injured.

    The suspect is described as an older, balding man with gray hair and a beard. Police say he was wearing tan outerwear at the time of the shooting, possibly a jacket or a work coat.

    Police hope to release a new sketch of the suspect sometime Tuesday as they believe he may have changed his appearance in some way.

    Right now, police say there's no evidence linking Lodato's death to two other unsolved murders in Alexandria, despite their similarities.

    Last November, 69-year-old Ronald Kirby was fatally shot inside his home, less than a mile from the house where Lodato was killed, and in 2003, real estate agent and wife of Sheriff Jim Dunning, Nancy Dunning was gunned down inside her Del Ray home.

    No arrests have been made in either case.

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