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2 women killed in same manner days apart spark questions in this city

Police say the two women murdered in Indianapolis are not connected, but the homicides bear striking similarities, including their manner of death.
2 women killed in same manner days apart spark questions in this city
Posted at 4:29 PM, Feb 05, 2024

Authorities are investigating two homicides that bear striking similarities to each other, sparking fears of a perpetrator who might kill again in an Indianapolis community. 

Though officials have said there isn't evidence that the two incidents are connected as of now, the Indianapolis Metro Police Department (IMPD) did say it's investigating a "number of commonalities" between them. 

Those include both victims being White females in their 50s. They were also "killed in the same manner" and found with physical trauma, though no official cause of death has been announced. 

Additionally, one woman, 58-year-old Shannon Lassere, was found on Jan. 27 at 2200 N Mitthoefer Road, and the other, 52-year-old Marianne Weis, was found on Feb. 1 at 2100 N Mitthoefer Road, about 150 yards from where Lassere had been found. Both had ties to the city's far east side, according to police.

Indianapolis police said they were taking "proactive steps out of an abundance of caution and in the interest of public safety" to make sure a similar event doesn't happen again in the community.

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Meanwhile, Lassere's son Justin Smith told CBS4 he believes there's someone in the community with a pointed mission. 

"I feel like there is somebody out here doing something," he told the publication. "It's not a coincidence. Something's wrong."

Officers told residents there would be more uniformed officers patrolling while detectives canvas the area, and IMPD Interim Chief Chris Bailey asked the public to check their security cameras for any suspicious activity. He also asked the public to come forward with any information regarding the homicides or about the women in the hours or days before their deaths.

"We need the community's assistance to understand exactly what these women were doing before they were killed that may help investigators moving forward," Bailey said, per Scripps News Indianapolis.

IMPD said it's working to identify any forensic evidence from the scene while looking into different city technologies. 

For now, it's asking the public to stay vigilant until there are more answers.

"We are asking our community to practice good safety habits — stay aware of their surroundings, stay in well-lit areas when walking at night, always ensure someone is aware of your location when out alone, and to call 911 if you feel like you are in danger," the department said in a post on Facebook.

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