National manhunt under way for woman accused of murders in Minnesota and Florida

Posted at 6:42 AM, Apr 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-16 13:20:28-04

The Lee County Sheriff's Office says a Minnesota fugitive wanted for the murder of her husband is also responsible for a murder in Fort Myers Beach, Fla., this week.

Lee County Undersheriff Carmine Marceno said in a press conference Friday that they believe that Lois Riess has since fled Southwest Florida to the Corpus Christi, Texas area.

A national manhunt is under way for Riess, who is considered armed and dangerous and should not be approached.

Marceno says Riess befriended 59-year-old Pamela Hutchinson and targeted her due to their similar appearance. 

Investigators say Riess murdered Hutchinson in her condo Monday, then took her ID and car and fled Southwest Florida in Hutchinson's white 2005 Acura TL with a Florida license plate Y37-TAA.

Riess is believed to have traveled through the Gulf coast to Corpus Cristi, Texas, but her current whereabouts are unknown.

Riess is wanted for murder and grand theft.

According to KLXT-TV in Rochester, Minnesota, Riess is facing second degree murder charges there after shooting her husband to death back in March.

According to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, Riess' car was found abandoned in Florida earlier this week and she remains at large.

Law enforcement also believe she stole over $20,000 from her deceased husband's business.