A killer who police say stalks prostitutes in South-Central Los Angeles, where he has already killed 10, tortures his victims with superficial slash wounds before he kills them by strangulation or stabbing, authorities said Tuesday.
Police say prostitutes’ killer tortures them first
The suspect has been systematically stalking and killing prostitutes since Jan. Detective Jerry Hudgeons of the Gardena Police Department said it is the similarity of the slash wounds on the bodies of the victims that has led police to suspect that the murders are linked. Hudgeons said the distinctive wounds were evident on the body of Gayle Marie Rousell, found Nov. It could have been done with a screwdriver or a beer opener.
After slicing Rousell on the face, upper body and back, the killer fatally stabbed her in the back with a large hunting knife, Hudgeons said. John of the Los Angeles Police Department said. All of the women, he said, had prostitution arrest records.
He is described as black, with a dark complexion, 30 to 35 years old and 5 feet, 10 inches to 6 feet tall. He is said to have black hair, brown eyes, smooth skin, a medium build, muscular arms and chest, and a small mustache.
In at least one assault, the attacker was wearing a baseball cap bearing the name FILA, a clothing manufacturer, police said. He was driving a or dark-colored Buick Regal with a baby seat on the rear seat.
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John said three victims survived. A year-old prostitute who was attacked several months ago remains in a coma after the suspect throttled and stabbed her and left her for dead.
Two other victims escaped the killer, St. John said. One prostitute, who escaped after being picked up Aug. Another prostitute, picked up in May at 47th and Flower streets, escaped from the suspect after being attacked and later gave police the description of the pickup truck. Ed Henderson, acting commanding officer of the Los Angeles police Robbery-Homicide Division, said police began to suspect in April that a serial killer was at work.
By then, the killer had claimed seven victims. The last known victim was Gail Ficklin, whose body was found Aug. The body of Patricia Dennis was found Feb. The body of Shelly Wilson was found March 20 in Centinella Park in Inglewood, and three days later the body of Lillian Stoval was found in the block of 6th Avenue. The women ranged in age from 22 to Except for Webb, Wilson and Rousell, all the victims died of strangulation, authorities said.
Most of the prostitutes had been picked up in an area bordered on the north by 51st Street, on the south gardena 57th Street, Main Street on the east and Western Avenue on the west, St. Police in those areas said prostitution traffic has not slowed there since the announcement. On Tuesday, a smattering of prostitutes, what police said was the normalstood on the corners on Figueroa Street between Manchester Boulevard and Vernon Avenue.
On Broadway near 48th Street, a block south of where the body of one victim was found five months ago, Terri, 26, held down her regular spot. She said she knew about gardena killer. Police had given her new description of the suspect and told her to look out for him, she said.
But Terri, mother of an 8-year-old girl, continued to work. How am I gonna eat?
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Another prostitute, called Peaches, 22, working on Broadway, swears that she was almost picked up by the suspect recently, although neither her description of the vehicle nor the man in the truck matches those the police are using. Some of the girls got a pimp, some of them are on drugs, some of them got families to support. So you gotta work.
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