FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. - It's been nearly 10 months since an 83-year-old retiree was shot and killed inside his million-dollar home along the Potomac River, but the case remains unsolved. Now, Fairfax County police are asking anyone who may have seen a black pick-up truck speeding through the Mason Neck area around the time Johan De Leede was murdered to come forward.
De Leede's death in March 2016 left residents nearby truly frightened. Investigators say it was just after 1 am on March 11 when neighbors in what is normally a very quiet area along the Potomac River heard two bursts of gunfire. De Leede was sitting in a chair in a first-floor room off of a porch that looks out towards the river.
De Leede was originally from the Netherlands and worked for the World Bank. Neighbors said he was often seen on the river sailing with his grandchildren or paddling a kayak. After his retirement, De Leede became an activist advocating for a bike path along Gunston Road.
At the time, Fairfax County Police Chief Edwin Roessler called the crime very unusual.
"The majority of our murders are acquaintance murders, whether it is domestic or friends where they have had an argument. Here, we have no leads, no information to tie any suspects or any motives to it, so it is very unusual," he told FOX 5 about a week after the murder.
Neighbors wondered if the killer might arrived by boat, but in March, police couldn't confirm how they would have gotten to De Leede's house.
Fairfax County police said Thursday afternoon that they want to talk to anyone who may have seen a black pick-up truck speeding through the area around the time of De Leede's murder. On the night of the homicide, a neighbor reportedly saw a dark, full-sized pickup truck leaving the area quickly. This was one of numerous leads that detectives have followed up on, but police say they want to definitively rule out any involvement.
Anyone who remembers seeing a truck or who has information about the case is encouraged to contact police, regardless of how trivial you feel it may be. Police say it could be the critical link in solving this case.
If you have information, you're asked to contact the Major Crimes Division at 703-246-7800, or contact Crime Solvers electronically by visiting http://www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org. You can also text-a-tip by texting "TIP187" plus your message to CRIMES(274637) or by calling 1-866-411-TIPS(8477), or call Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131.