Witness reflects on Henrico homicide, suspect still sought

By: Laura Geller - bio | email

HENRICO, VA (WWBT) - The search continues for the man who is suspected of killing a mother last night in Henrico.

Police are looking for Hassan Ibrahim Ahmad Al-Sari.

He's been charged with first degree murder, in connection with 40-year old Kate Johnson's death.

Johnson's family says she and Al-Sari had been in a relationship for three years, but Johnson broke it off about a year ago after threats of violence.

Last night, those threats allegedly became reality.

Gunfire followed by the flashing blue lights of police cruisers light up the Saturday night's sky.

They are the tragic indicators of a life lost allegedly at the hands of someone Kate Johnson knew, and once even cared for.

Police say around 10:45 Saturday night Al-Sari shot Johnson multiple times.

She was found outside the Taste of the Town restaurant at the Clarion Hotel on Williamsburg Road and later died at the hospital.

Witnesses say Johnson arrived at the restaurant with a different man; Al-Sari showed up less than ten minutes later.

Owner Sabrina Dalrymple was one of the last people to see Johnson alive.

She watched as the 40-year old walked outside with Al-Sari.

"I think he was just really out to get her," she said. "She did hesitate. She hesitated two or three times. It's almost like she didn't want to go outside."

According to Dalrymple, Johnson left the other man sitting at a table.

"She told him; 'Give me five minutes. If I'm not back in five minutes, come check on me," Dalrymple said. "Then he said ok and he didn't even wait five minutes it may have been maybe a minute."

That was one minute too long for Johnson, who we're told had a restraining order against her former boyfriend.

Family members say there was never any physical violence, but many threats, especially when Johnson broke off the relationship.

It's a painful reality for those left behind.

"If she would have gave me any indication that something was wrong then I would have called the police," she said. "I would have done anything to keep her from going out that door."

We're told Al-Sari owns the BP gas station just down the street from the Clarion.

As of Sunday morning, the pumps were on and the open sign lit, but the doors were locked and it seemed no one was on duty.

Customers tell us Al-Sari is usually the one working there.

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