LOS ANGELES — Perhaps the “Grim Sleeper” never took a break after all.
Police were investigating two more homicides Thursday that could be linked to the car mechanic already accused of killing 10 women in the serial murder case.
Detective Dennis Kilcoyne said suspect Lonnie Franklin Jr. might also be responsible for the deaths of two women whose bodies were found in South Los Angeles in the 1990s. No charges have been filed in those two deaths.
Police initially believed a single serial killer had operated in the area from 1985 to 1988 and again from 2002 to 2007. The 14-year pause led to the nickname “Grim Sleeper.”
“I don’t think there is a gap,” Kilcoyne said Thursday. “He was here, he was active. I don’t think you stop one day, take a 14-year vacation and then start up again.”
Kilcoyne released few details about the new cases but said the bodies of the women were found in the same general area as other victims.
Most of those women were found in alleyways within a few miles of Franklin’s mint-green stucco home a few miles south of downtown Los Angeles.
Franklin has pleaded not guilty. A call to his attorney, Louisa Pensanti, was not immediately returned.
Detectives have released dozens of photos found at Franklin’s home and garage.
Kilcoyne said 72 women in the pictures have been identified and ruled out as victims, and four new missing person cases have been opened involving people in the photos.
Women in 62 pictures have yet to be identified.