Police: Man dies following assault and robbery in Old Town

Police: Man dies following assault and robbery in Old Town

Updated 10:52 a.m. April 5.

Correction: Due to an error by police officials, the Times erroneously reported that the original assault occurred on March 29. The victim was first assaulted on March 28.

By Erich Wagner (File photo)

Alexandria police announced Friday that detectives are investigating the city’s first homicide of the year, after a man who was assaulted during a robbery in Old Town died of a head injury sustained in the incident Friday.

Police spokeswoman Crystal Nosal said at around 9:33 p.m. on March 28, officers responded to the report of an assault along the 200 block of S. Alfred St. Upon arriving, they found Melaku Abraha, 69, of Alexandria suffering from a head injury yet conscious and conversant. Abraha was taken to a local hospital, and investigators later determined he was assaulted during the course of a robbery.

Since the incident , the victim’s condition deteriorated, Nosal said, and he died Friday.

“As head trauma sometimes does, it went downhill [over the next several days],” Nosal said. “It wasn’t a case of a shooting or a stabbing … but it was an assault as part of a robbery.”

Nosal said police are working to identify possible suspects. She encouraged anyone with information about the incident to contact Detective Bikeramjit Gill at 703-746-6751.