Ronald Kirby shot to death inside Alexandria home

Ron Kirby served the Council of Governments for 26 years. Photo: Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments

(WJLA) - The director of the transportation arm of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments was found shot to death Monday inside his Alexandria home, authorities say.

Ron Kirby, 69, was found shot to death inside his home on Elm Street in Alexandria on Monday afternoon by a relative. Alexandria Police say he was shot several times.

He was last seen alive early Monday morning, but a relative who arrived at the home early in the afternoon found Kirby suffering from gunshot wounds.

More than 24 hours later, investigators are still poring over the crime scene in Alexandria. ABC7 has learned that Virginia State Police are assisting and using some specialized forensic equipment.

"This was a very prominent citizen in a quiet neighborhood who finds himself the victim of a homicide," Alexandria Police Chief Earl Cook said.

"Current investigation does not indicate there's reason for neighbors or citizens to be overly concerned about violence."

But for area residents, it’s all still very troubling – they're wondering whether it was a burglary, or maybe someone he knew.

"We're just hoping they solve it quickly -- some years ago we had a similar midday murder and it's never been solved," said neighbor Fred Beer.

Kirby's murder is the city's 5th in 2013. The city had no recorded murders in 2012, and neighbors in the quiet neighborhood where he lived are shocked.

Hailed for his "deep knowledge and wise counsel," Kirby served the COG for 26 years, most recently as the director of the Council of Government's Department of Transportation Planning.

"One of the region's leading experts on transportation planning, (he) was a key figure in all aspects of our work on regional planning and collaboration," Chuck Bean, the COG's executive director, said in a statement.

D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson echoed the sentiment, calling Kirby's death a loss for the Washington area.

"Few people understood our transportation problems and needs as well as Ron -- he was the go-to guy for transportation," Mendelson said in a statement.

Investigators returned to the Elm Street home Tuesday in an attempt to find any clues toward who may have shot Kirby. Anyone with information about the murder is asked to call 703-746-6711.