Natalia Pronina: Russian dancer shot dead from close range by assassin after alleged affair with married politician
A professional dancer in Russia was hunted down and killed on a Moscow street after she reportedly had an affair with a politician. As she returned home from a choreography session, Natalia Pronina, 30, was hunted down by a masked assassin and killed with a pistol at a close range.
The unidentified attacker reportedly released a stun grenade to distract attention from the shooting on Wednesday, December 23. According to police sources, the shooter was most likely a contract killer who was paid to kill the victim. As a primary theory behind her murder, the cops are investigating the possibility that Pronina had kept the fact under wraps that she was in a long-term relationship with a wealthy, married man who is believed to have been a member of the Russian parliament. The man was reportedly trained in martial arts. The secret affair came to an end this summer when the MP's wife learned about the extramarital affair.
Pronina was an expert ballroom dancer and had won prizes at international dance festivals, including in Britain. She is also known to have formed her own team to perform at VIP corporate parties and elite clubs, including striptease.
The victim's boyfriend Alexander Kravchenko, 33, has already presented the authorities with his alibi for the day Pronina was killed, proving that he was not involved in any way with her assassination. He said that said he was in Yalta in the Crimea, where he works, at the time. He also revealed that his girlfriend had a stalker and also owed a £6,000 ($8000) debt that she needed to repay. Apparently, Pronina had complained about a migrant worker from a nearby construction site who had been repeatedly harassing her. According to her friends, Pronina might have been killed on the orders of someone whose advances she had rejected.
A friend named Valeria told Russian news outlet Komsomolskaya Pravda: “Only one of her admirers could be behind this because of jealousy." A former dancing colleague Anzhelika added, “Natasha not only danced beautifully, she is a real beauty,” she said. “Men always clung to her and it is possible that one of the rejected fans could have killed her. She did not have a serious relationship. She was not the type who dreams of a white dress and a bunch of kids. Her work was her life. She earned well, she could afford a lot.”
The assassin was reportedly dressed in a hoodie and wearing a mask and glasses. He had used a non-lethal self-defense gun redesigned for shooting with real bullets. In surveillance footage from the incident, the suspect could be seen raising a pistol and opening fire after approaching the victim and her accompanying friends before fleeing the scene. Eyewitnesses claim that before the gunfire was heard, the attacker had thrown a stun grenade to distract the group. A local resident told journalists that there was “a lot of blood everywhere” at the spot where she had been shot. She was rushed to the hospital where she was declared dead overnight.
Authorities recovered two bullet cases and a pistol from the scene of the crime. Investigators are now seeking an additional suspect in the case.