Monday, July 30, marks the second anniversary of the day Alexandra “Ally” Brueger was murdered while jogging on Fish Lake Road in Rose Township.
Ally was only 31 years old and a registered nurse at the time. She was running that fateful Saturday afternoon in 2016 on the familiar roads she had been jogging nearly every day for 10 years.
At approximately 2:30 p.m. someone snuffed the life out of this young woman by shooting her in the back four times, killing her. She was a
tiny woman at about 4 feet 9 inches tall and weighing just 98 pounds.
Although no one has been arrested, the Michigan State Police (MSP) continue to aggressively work this case. There has been one change, however. In the beginning, F/Lt. Michael Shaw said, “Everyone is a suspect.” He repeated that on a Crime Watch Daily episode about Ally’s murder, which aired in March of this year. During his interview with the host, Chris Hanson, Shaw said everyone was still a suspect, “including mom and dad.”
That, however, has changed. “We do not consider the Bruegers as suspects at this time,” said Shaw earlier this month.
That is because Franz voluntarily submitted to a polygraph test, which was completed in Flint on Friday, April 13. He passed the polygraph conclusively, eliminating him as a suspect.
“We continue to receive tips and follow up on all of them,” Shaw said. “This is still an active investigation and detectives from the Special Investigation Section are still working this case.”
During that same Crime Watch Daily episode, a former boyfriend of Ally’s, Weston Sutherland, pointed the finger at her parents.
“You think the parents could have done this,” asked Hanson during the interview.
“I think that her father could have, yes,” Sutherland said.
Franz, who says he doesn’t rattle easily, scoffed at what Hanson called the “stunning accusation.”
Since that interview, the idea that Franz Brueger could have shot and killed his only child was continued publicly on a website called websleuths.com.
Tricia Griffith is the owner and administrator of that site, which is a members-only forum dedicated to studying, discussing and possibly assisting in solving open crimes throughout the country.
“The public is able to read open forum discussions,” Griffith said. “But no one can ‘post’ anything on the site unless they go through the application and approval process to become a verified insider.”
In order to protect members’ identities, code names are used when participating in the forum discussions. Ally’s murder has become a popular topic of discussion on the site. Well-meaning members have had daily discussions regarding this crime, especially since one member claims to have inside knowledge of the case.
Although he, too, uses a code name, that member has identified himself as Ally’s boyfriend and claims to have first-hand knowledge about her parents and the case. He also claims to be in touch with investigators and says the FBI is now involved.
Shaw said, “Sutherland, still a suspect, has no inside information on this investigation and the FBI is not involved.”
Nikki said, “We have lived two years now without our beloved daughter and only child. Time has not quelled the anger, pain and despair that we feel over her senseless murder.
“We have no closure and we know that people who are either fearful or indifferent still have tips and information that they are holding onto,” Nikki said. “Ally was ambushed — try and imagine the fear and terror she experienced as she ran from the gun to try and stay alive.
“Please help us find justice for our daughter,” she said. “Speak up, you can do it anonymously. Don’t let the killer, a puny, impotent coward have another day of freedom. If not for us, then speak up for our dog, Zeus. He still looks for his girl, Ally, every day.”
Shaw said, “Yes, there is a killer is out there. Someone knows who it is and hasn’t come forward yet. We need that one missing piece to solve this investigation. Please contact 800 MICH TIP (800-642-4847) if you have information.”
Crime Stoppers Reward
Crime Stoppers of Michigan is offering up to $8,500 for tips leading to the arrest of a suspect in Brueger’s murder. The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, or ATF, is offering $5,000. Anyone with information can submit a tip anonymously by calling 1-800-SPEAKUP.
Crime Watch Daily
The Crime Watch Daily episodes (Part 1 and Part 2), featuring the case of Alexandra “Ally” Brueger, can be followed at
Note of thanks
We would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to the Tri-County Times for continuing to do stories that bring awareness to our daughter’s murder, and everyone who took the time to contribute to those articles.
Thank you also to Vera Hogan for her tenacity, integrity and determination in finding the truth and obtaining justice for our Ally. And to the men and women of Holly VFW Post and Auxiliary 5587 for their ongoing generosity, support and friendship. They epitomize the values of community. Our grief and daily struggles would have been even more bleak without them.
Nikki and Franz Brueger, Rose Township
Parents of Alexandra “Ally” Brueger