"It's unreal. It's unreal, and I don't understand why anyone thought of doing something like this," said the widow of a 94-year-old man who was killed in their home Wednesday evening.
The death of Marian Bouk's husband, Elmer Roehrs, was quickly ruled to be suspicious -- and on Friday, a prosecutor said that a woman who had been charged with burglarizing their home is "very likely" to be charged in his murder.
Marie Maybell Johnson, 45, was ordered to be held without bond while the charges are decided. In security video, Johnson was the only person seen coming or going from the home Wednesday, when he was found dead, the commonwealth's attorney told a judge at a hearing Friday morning.
Commonwealth's Attorney Randy Sengel told News4 he is meeting with homicide detectives this morning to discuss additional charges.
"It appears very likely Ms. Johnson will be charged with murder," Sengel told the court.
Johnson already is charged with burglarizing Bouk and Roehrs' home in November. Johnson was arrested on those charges hours after Bouk's son found Roehrs dead.
Neighbors told News4 that the family seemed to have a problem with break-ins and recently installed security equipment. A surveillance camera is aimed at the front door, and floodlights are installed around the sides of the house. Signs state that a security alarm is in place.
A neighbor said that to her knowledge, no other homes had been burglarized. "I think it's been targeted several times, so yeah, it's a little strange," she said.
Roehrs apparently suffered trauma to the upper body, authorities said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Johnson, of no fixed address, was charged with burglary and grand larceny for a break-in that occurred Nov. 27, when someone took silverware and electronic equipment. Police arrested her about 3:15 a.m. Thursday following a traffic stop on Duke Street.
A warrant had been issued for her arrest Feb. 8. Authorities said they "did everything [they] did to track her down."
Alexandria Mayor Bill Euille often responds to police incidents likely to raise community concern. "This is the type of incident we certainly don't want to have in our community," he said Wednesday night, "...[and] I have every confidence that [police] will get to the bottom of this, and we'll understand what happened and why and bring this case to a close."
Bouk, 87, owns several condos along Richmond Highway that she rents to people in need, helping them get their lives back together, News4's Pat Collins reported. Neighbors said they would often see tenants dropping off rent checks around the first of the month.
Roehrs and his wife eloped to Las Vegas about a decade ago, Collins reported.
His death is the first homicide in Alexandria in 2013. No homicides were reported in Alexandria in 2012.