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Virginia Mother Missing Since 2001 Allegedly Killed By Husband Who's Reportedly Been Linked To Four Murders
Annie Doris Horne was 37 when she disappeared from her Richmond residence more than 21 years ago. Her husband, the late Thomas Horne, told reporters that on the night before Annie's disappearance, she woke him up "gasping for air."
Police believe a missing Virginia woman was killed by her husband, who is now reportedly suspected of a series of slayings.
Annie Doris Horne was 37 years old when she vanished from the Jeff Davis neighborhood of Richmond on June 3, 2001. According to the Richmond Police Department, the insurance company secretary left her belongings at her Yorktown Ave. residence, including her prescription eyeglasses, Bible, coat, keys, credit cards and van.
Richmond Police Det. Clarence Key said she left behind “essential things that she would need,” per CBS Richmond affiliate WTVR-TV.
“She was a mother, a sister. She never missed work. She was very reliable,” Det. Key told the outlet in September. “So it was uncharacteristic of her to just walk away and disappear like that.”
At the time of Annie’s disappearance, her husband, Thomas Horne, reported to Richmond Police and news outlets that his wife woke him up on multiple occasions, “gasping for breath,” according to WTVR-TV. Thomas said this even happened on the night before Annie vanished.
“And she went back to sleep,” said Thomas.
Thomas and a friend also allegedly reported that Annie sustained bouts of depression, with Thomas admitting he mentioned the subject of separation.
“I didn’t mean it,” he later told authorities.
Thomas died in 2017.
Now, according to WTVR-TV, not only do Richmond investigators believe Thomas was behind Annie’s presumed death, they suspect he is behind the deaths of another four people.
The names and the circumstances surrounding the four homicides were unclear, and Richmond Police did not immediately respond to requests from Oxygen.com.
Twenty-one years after her disappearance, Horne’s sister, Mary Ruffin, continues to hold out for hope.
“It’s the hardest thing we had to do, just ask the Lord to give us strength because we know she didn’t just openly leave,” Ruffin stated. “She was a loving sister. She was a hard worker. Everybody loved her. She was a people person. And she most definitely loved her family.”
Vowing to never give up on the investigation, Det. Key previously told reporters they wouldn’t stop until closure could be found.
“One of the things we tell the family and we tell the community — we don’t forget,” said Key. “So even though it’s been years, this is still an open case. And we’re still trying to generate leads to follow up on with the hopes of bringing some closure to the family and to this case.”
Key, along with Richmond Det. George Wade, recently met with some of Annie Horne’s North Carolina relatives, according to WTVR-TV. They collected DNA samples in the event Horne’s remains are ever discovered.
Today, Annie would be 58 years old. She is described as a Black woman, about 5 feet 4 inches, weighing about 125 pounds.
Anyone with information is asked to call Richmond Det. Key at 1-804-646-5100.