Radford, VA—Joyce Bennett said it was a typical day last Wednesday morning when Ross Ashley walked into her Radford office and pointed a gun at her face, demanding the keys to her Mercedes SUV.
Bennett is the property manager of Gilbert Real Estate. The real estate office managed Ashley's one bedroom apartment in Radford.
According to employees, Ashley walked into the office around 11:20 A.M. and asked to see "her." Ashley didn't say her name. The receptionist allowed Ashley to go back to Bennett's office.
Joyce Bennett says Ashley walked in and tried to shut the door. She says he was wearing a black cap, black fleece jacket, and had a dark green backpack. Bennett says she had never met Ashley and didn't know who he was.
Bennett told News 7, "He comes up to my desk right here and says he wants my keys and I sat back in my chair and I'm like you gotta be kidding me and then he pulls this gun out and held it in my face."
Bennett says she quickly handed over the keys to her Mercedes SUV.
"He said don't do anything stupid several times," said Bennett. "He was very calm, talking just like you and I right now."
After taking the keys, Bennett says he walked out of the office. She says the whole ordeal lasted less than a minute.
"There is no words to describe it, you're there still thinking this isn't real," said Bennett.
Her SUV was found the next day at the Smart Road in Blacksburg. She was on her way over to pick the vehicle up when investigators called and asked her to come to the Virginia Tech campus. They wanted her to look at a picture. Bennett says it was Ashley.
Bennett still doesn't know why Ashley targeted her or the real estate office. She says there were no problems with Ashley.
"We were the fortunate ones, we were the very fortunate ones so it's not about us at all, it's about the families," said Bennett.