Meadville Tribune

State News

February 14, 2014

Iowa town mourns murdered sisters as Pittsburgh police search for killer or killers

CLINTON, Iowa — This typical Midwest river city shed a collective, heartfelt tear Friday for two close-knit sisters murdered 650 miles away in a big city tragedy that’s baffled family, friends and police investigators.

Dr. Sarah Wolfe, 38, a pediatrician and psychiatrist, and Susan Wolfe, 44, a teacher’s aide, were found dead, a single gunshot to each of their heads, a week ago in the unfinished basement of the home they shared in the east end of Pittsburgh, Pa.

Pittsburgh investigators said they are trying to piece together the motive for the double-murder in an effort to identify the killer or killers.

They said one theory is that Dr. Wolfe surprised whoever committed the double murders when she arrived home the afternoon of Feb. 6 from the psychiatric clinic where she worked as her older sister was being assaulted.

Susan’s body was unclothed at the bottom of the basement staircase. Sarah’s body, fully clothed, was lying lifeless next to her sister. Police were beckoned to the murder scene when co-workers reported Susan failed to show up for work the morning of Feb. 7.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that police traced a public bus fare card of one of the sisters to a specific time she was with a man inside and outside a Port Authority bus. The older sister typically took a bus to and from her work at Hillel Academy in Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh Police Commander Tim O’Connor told a meeting of frightened neighbors in the vicinity of the murder scene to be vigilant and to report any unusual activity.

More than 200 friends, colleagues and other mourners filled Prince of Peace Roman Catholic Church in Clinton, Iowa, as the remaining eight members of the Wolfe family – two brothers, four sisters and the parents –  bid an emotional goodbye to the slain sisters at a Requiem Mass.

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