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One Year Later, Dunning Murder Still Unsolved

A community mourns as police continue to look for answers.

On Dec. 5, family and friends of Nancy Dunning will hold a solemn service, commemorating the one-year anniversary of her murder — a murder that remains unsolved.

“The investigation is active and ongoing and we still believe that someone knows something about Nancy Dunning’s murder,” said Amy Bertsch, a spokesperson for the Alexandria Police Department. “We need that person to come forward.”

Dunning was found shot to death in her Del Ray home on Dec. 5, 2004. Police believe that it was not a random crime.

“We still believe that she was targeted,” Bertsch said.

Dunning’s husband, Alexandria sheriff James Dunning, found his wife’s body.

Recently the Office of Sheriff confirmed that he was on sick leave, hospitalized for dehydration and vertigo. He has not returned to work at this time.

Shortly after Nancy Dunning’s murder, family, friends and local businesses collected $100,000 in reward funds. Despite all of the publicity that the murder received and the amount of the reward being offered, there has been no arrest.

SOURCES CLOSE to the investigation confirmed that evidence in the case is being presented to a federal grand jury. Both the Alexandria Commonwealth’s Attorney, S. Randolph Sengel, and the Alexandria Police Department, declined to comment on this development.

As the anniversary approaches, police are stepping up efforts to obtain information. Ken Boland, the owner of Affordable Banners and Signs, a business on Mount Vernon Avenue, has made a four-feet by seven-feet banner with a picture of Nancy Dunning, reward information, and a number where people can call with information about the case. The banner will be displayed on the side of the Police Department’s command bus.

“The bus will be at the Farmer’s Market on Saturday and we hope that this will bring additional attention to the case,” Bertsch said.

The family will hold a memorial service on Sunday, Dec. 5, at 7 p.m. at the Mount Vernon Recreation Center. They have declined to comment on the investigation or on the anniversary of the murder.