UPDATE - 7/30/14
WINCHESTER – Police in Virginia say the mysterious 'Woman in Black ' wants to be left alone.
Officers said that they encountered the woman after a crowd had gathered near the 2400 block of Valley Avenue where she was walking. The woman told officers that she is from Winchester and intends on staying in the area.
She also told officers that she wants to be left alone and is asking that the public respect her wishes.
Police took the woman to an undisclosed location and provided her with food and shelter.
Who is the mysterious "woman in black?" One thing is for sure: She's got a lot of people talking, steadily trekking across several U.S. states and creating a buzz in local towns and on social media as she goes.
The mysterious woman, dressed from head to toe in black, has been seen walking along roads and highways in several U.S. states over the last couple of months. There is now a "Where is the Mysterious Woman in Black?" Facebook page dedicated to her 500-mile journey, and a hashtag that's trending (#womaninblack).
Over the last two months, she's been spotted in Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Virginia and now West Virginia. she was spotted Tuesday morning heading east on Route 50 in Augusta, WV. Tricia Lee shot video of her walking along the roadside.
According to WCYB.com, the "woman in black" is from Alabama. The Sullivan County, Tn. Sheriff's Office told the TV station the woman is Elizabeth Poles, 56, of Motts, Alabama, and investigators say when she was stopped in the area last month, she told them she was "on a Bible mission and needed a ride to Winchester, Virginia."
The station also reported that the woman said she was from an Islamic nation and worked at the Pentagon, but that investigators determined those statements weren't true.
Meanwhile, Reuters reported a man claiming to be the woman's brother also identified her by the same name, saying she's a U.S. Army veteran with two children who is a widow.
There's no word on her exact mission, or just where she's headed, if Winchester is indeed her destination.