UPDATE: Police don’t believe Ashley Okland’s murder was a random act, and think she may have been killed by a fellow realtor. They’re now looking for a scruffy-looking man previously seen driving a Cadillac Escalade. See update after the jump…
Ashley Okland was out doing what realtors do Friday afternoon, showing
townhomes to prospective buyers at the Stone Creek Villas in West Des
Moines, Iowa. Just after 2 p.m., a woman who works in the development
found her covered in blood in a model unit.
Ashley died at the hospital. She was shot once in the head and once in the chest.
So far, police have no suspects or motive in the slaying. They believe it was an isolated incident, but really have no way of knowing at this point. Just to be on the safe side, Iowa Reality, Ashley’s company, canceled all home showings for the following day.
The motive could have been robbery. Realtors like to put on the affectations of wealth, leading a moron to believe that they could be a good target for a takedown. In February, two men were arrested in Ottumwa, Iowa for robbing an agent in which they got away with cash and her cell phone.
But Ashley would seem an unlikely target for a beef. She was 27-years-old and served on the boards of civic social groups. Her family says she has no known enemies.
They’re now looking for a man believed to be a fellow realtor who has been seen multiple times in February and March outside the townhomes where she was shot. The man is described as “scruffy-looking” and driving a black SUV along the lines of a Cadillac Escalade.
It also has tricked out wheels.
He was spotted talking to Ashley outside the model townhome in the months leading up to her slaying. On one occasion, he reportedly followed her when she left the area in her own car.
But detectives remain tight-lipped about the details of the case. They won’t say whether Ashley was robbed or assaulted prior to her murder.
See our last story from the Homicide file: Michael Gilbert, Sex Offender, Kills Homeless Man to Fake His Own Death (Again).