Grandmother who ‘killed husband and then murdered her lookalike’ arrested in Texas after nationwide manhunt

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A woman suspected of killing her husband in Minnesota and a woman in Florida has been captured at a South Texas resort. 

Lois Riess, 56, was arrested by two federal deputy marshals at a South Padre Island restaurant, the US Marshals Service said in a statement. South Padre Island is a beach resort community 27 miles from the crossing into Mexico. 

Ms Riess had been on the run since at least late March when her husband, 54-year-old David Riess, was found fatally shot at their home in Blooming Prairie, Minnesota.

She became the subject of a nationwide hunt. 

She had been seen on 23 March at a shop and casino in northern Iowa. Authorities released video showing Ms Riess approaching the store cashier, buying a sandwich and asking for directions south of the state. The shop is next to a casino where authorities say Ms Riess spent the day gambling before stopping at the petrol station. 

David Riess’s business partner called authorities to ask them to check on him on 23 March. They said no one at work had seen him in more than two weeks. Authorities later found his body inside his home peppered with multiple gunshots. 

They were not able to determine how long he had been dead and could not find his wife.

They learned Ms Riess may have been at the casino in Iowa, but she was nowhere to be seen when they looked for her there. 

It is believed she travelled to Florida, where investigators allege she killed 59-year-old Pamela Hutchinson of Bradenton, a small city in west Florida. 

Authorities were called to an area of Fort Myers Beach on 9 April and found Hutchinson dead, with gunshot wounds. 

Investigators believe Ms Riess used the same gun that killed her husband to fatally shoot Hutchinson. They believe she killed Hutchinson to assume her identity. 

Surveillance video showed Ms Riess smiling and talking with Hutchinson on 5 April at a brewery in Fort Myers Beach. Authorities said she may have targeted Hutchinson because the two women looked alike. 

Hutchinson had moved to Florida last year from Virginia Beach, Virginia. 

AP