Grim Sleeper photos: LAPD received dozens of calls since images released
The LAPD announced Friday morning that it has received dozens of calls from the public after releasing scores of images of women found in the possession of the accused Grim Sleeper serial killer.
"We are grateful for the public’s response to the release of the images," the department said in a statement. "It is our fervent hope that with this response, coupled with the tireless efforts of our detectives, the women depicted in these images will be positively identified."
Information from those calls are now being investigated by detectives.
Photos and videos of the women were found after police arrested Lonnie Franklin Jr., who was charged in 10 killings in South Los Angeles. He has pleaded not guilty.
Detectives set out to identify the women, fearing that some could be additional homicide victims. There were several photos of each woman, and police whittled the collection down to 180 images.
For months they slogged through images in missing-person databases and coroner records, hoping for matches. The work proved fruitless. With the detectives no closer to identifying the women, police turned to the public Thursday for help. At a news conference, they released cropped versions of the images that show the women's faces, hoping the women themselves, their family members or acquaintances will recognize them and contact investigators.
"As a police department, we have an obligation to account for the welfare of these women," said veteran homicide Det. Dennis Kilcoyne, who headed the task force that hunted for the killer. "We're trying to fill in the life and times of Lonnie Franklin over the past 30 years, and talking to people is a big part of that. These are obviously women who had a conversation or two with this guy.... I won't be surprised if we find some of them were his victims."
Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD at (877) LAPD-24-7.
-- Andrew Blankstein and Joel Rubin