The stories that are featured on the NBC investigative series Dateline are rarely ever pleasant ones, but the crimes of Lois Riess were particularly calculated and cold. Referred to by the public as "The Killer Grandma," Lois Riess was arrested in the spring of 2018 on two murder charges.
Her purported spree began in her home state of Minnesota, and it took her to Florida before she was eventually caught in Texas.
Lois Riess' offenses will be shown in detail on the Jan. 29 episode of Dateline. The two-hour special is aptly titled "The Woman at the Bar," which is the place where she met her second victim.
Keep reading to find out where Lois Riess is now, and to learn what crimes she has been accused of committing.
Lois Riess was accused of killing her husband and her lookalike.
Prior to March of 2018, Lous Riess led a fairly normal life with her longtime husband, David Riess, in Blooming Prairie, Minn. David Riess was a worm farmer, and he had been married to Lois Riess for more than 25 years. Both were in their fifties.
The couple had three kids together, and they were also the grandparents of five.
When both Lois and David Riess stopped showing up to work or interacting with their friends and loved ones in March of 2018, many suspected that something was terribly wrong.
David Riess' business partner called the authorities after 16 days of him failing to contact him or appear at his job.
Upon a routine welfare check, the police discovered David Riess' decaying body at the home he shared with Lois Riess. He had been shot to death.
Lois Riess, however, was nowhere to be found. Neither was the couple's vehicle.
During the preliminary investigation, authorities learned that Lois Riess had a substantial gambling problem, and that she had lost a $500,000 inheritance due to her demons.
After David Riess' murder, his wife withdrew $11,000 from his business account, and she shifted it to their personal account. It was clear that Lois Riess was a key suspect. A manhunt ensued, but she was already in Fort Myers, Fla. Lois Riess had even struck again.
Surveillance videos from a Florida restaurant showed Lois Riess befriending 59-year-old Pamela Hutchinson. The two shared a similar physical appearance, and they could be mistaken for one another.
That is why, authorities surmised, Lois Riess allegedly killed Pamela Hutchinson before stealing her identity. Both Pamela Hutchinson and David Riess were killed with a .22-caliber pistol as well.
Lois Riess was ultimately apprehended by authorities at a restaurant on San Padre Island in Texas.
Where is Lois Riess now?
In the summer of 2020, the Minnesota native pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in connection to the death of her husband. Prior to her guilty plea regarding David Riess' death, Lois Riess pled guilty to the murder of Pamela Hutchinson in Florida.
She was extradited to Minnesota, which is where she will serve her life sentence.
After pleading guilty to David Riess' murder, Lois Riess shared her side of the story of what happened on the day he was killed.
She claimed that the couple had gotten into a fight after attending their grandson's basketball game, and that David Riess passed her the gun so she could harm herself. Instead, she shot him.
Lois Riess is currently incarcerated in Minnesota.
Dateline airs on Fridays at 9 p.m. ET on NBC.