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Nationwide Manhunt For Grandmother Accused Of Murder, Identity Theft

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/CBSLA) — A nationwide manhunt is underway for a 56-year-old Minnesota woman wanted for two murders, including the killing of a woman whose identity she may have stolen.

Lois Ann Riess is accused of kicking off the crime spree by shooting and killing her husband at their home in tiny Blooming Prairie last month. The body of David Riess was discovered March 23 after business partners reported they hadn't seen him for two weeks.

Dodge County deputies say Riess stole her husband's Cadillac Escalade and $11,000 from his business accounts by forging his signature. She was traced to an Iowa casino but evaded capture.

Deputies believe Riess then drove to Florida, where she met 59-year-old Pamela Sellers Hutchinson. "Riess's mode of operation is to befriend women who resemble her and steal their identity," Lee County Undersheriff Carmine Marcino said.

Lois Riess

Video of the two meeting at a Fort Myers brewery was released today by Lee County investigators.

Investigators say that after shooting Hutchinson with what is believed to be the same gun used on her husband, Riess stole her victim's identification, credit cards, and car. Surveillance images show Riess walking outside the building and driving away in a white 2005 Honda Acura, with Florida license plate Y37TAA.

"We want to warn everybody, Riess is considered to be armed and dangerous and should not be approached," Rose said.

After Riess left Florida, investigators believe she drove 1,300 miles along the Gulf Coast to Louisiana and Texas. She was last spotted in Corpus Christi.

There's a very real fear that Riess could kill again, in a desperate race to extend her run, possibly to Mexico. Anyone with information on Riess is asked to contact the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Tip Line at (877) 966-6222.

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