It has been a violent Spring in Chicago, and the city has received a lot of negative attention in recent weeks. Now, police are saying there could be a serial strangler on the loose, after a fourth woman was found murdered in a vacant building last weekend.
The Chicago Tribune reports that, in the last two years, four women have been found strangled in vacant or abandoned buildings in the South Side's Roseland and West Pullman neighborhoods:
Three of the attacks are linked by evidence, while the most recent slaying last weekend fits the pattern, though forensic testing has not been completed, said Calumet Area Lt. Anthony Carothers.
The first victim, 38-year-old Eureka Jackson, was found strangled in November of 2008. The bodies of the other three victims were all discovered in 2010. An unidentified woman was found on Jan. 11, 30-year-old Siobhan Hampton was found on March 30 and 29-year-old Lutelda Michelle Hudson was found last weekend, the Tribune reports. All of the women had been strangled to death, had police records involving prostitution and were discovered in vacant or abandoned buildings.
On Tuesday, police issued their third alert to people in the West Pullman and Roseland neighborhoods, and Cook County Crime Stoppers offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.
"We just recently obtained confirmation of similarities," Carothers told the Tribune. "So now we're reviewing it more as a pattern. ... Now we can follow the evidence. We can put our hands on it. ... They are someone's daughter. Even if society or the Police Department doesn't agree with their way of making money, they still don't deserve to be killed."
Police are beefing up patrols in an area near 120th and 112th streets, Michigan Avenue and Halsted Street, and urging women to be cautious and avoid walking alone, Fox Chicago reports.
Fox also reported that the slayings are similar to a string of murders in 2000, when six women were found dead in vacant buildings throughout the summer.