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Twitter, Facebook help LAPD identify women in 'Grim Sleeper' case

Grim Sleeper
The Los Angeles police officials said they believe they have identified at least four women seen in photos found at the home of the alleged "Grim Sleeper" serial killer after posting images on special Facebook and Twitter pages.

Forty-two photographs found at the home of suspect Lonnie Franklin Jr. were posted last week on the social media sites as police sought the public's help identifying the women. The photos, taken between 1976 and 2010, were among about 1,000 photos seized from Franklin's home when he was arrested in July 2010.

Franklin, 60, has been charged with murder in the slayings of 10 women whose bodies were found on the streets of South Los Angeles over two decades. Authorities said he has been linked to at least six more killings.

MAP: Grim Sleeper killings, 1985-2007

At least one woman identified herself to detectives as being in the pictures after approaching detectives at an LAPD kiosk at the Taste of Soul Festival last weekend in the Crenshaw district, LAPD officials said. In the other cases, relatives of several other women contacted police to say their loved ones were alive.

LAPD detectives will make contact with those individuals before they officially take them off the list.

PHOTOS: Images of women found in possession of 'Grim Sleeper' suspect

When authorities found the photos on Franklin's property, along with hundreds of hours of video, they said they feared that some of the women could be additional victims. Some of the images appeared to be innocent snapshots, but most showed women in various states of undress in sexual poses.

Detectives culled duplicate images and sought to identify about 160 women. They tried to contact the women on their own, but when they were unable to identify the rest, they took the rare step of making the images public. Hundreds of tips poured in that have helped detectives identify additional victims.

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-- Andrew Blankstein

Follow Andrew Blankstein on Twitter and Google+.

Photo: The Los Angeles Police Department released photos of more than 100 women that were apparently taken by the alleged "Grim Sleeper" serial killer. Credit: Los Angeles Police Department

 
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