May 5th, 2010
02:32 PM ET

New sketches released in hunt for 'Grim Sleeper' serial killer

Police released these three composite sketches showing what the "Grim Sleeper" serial killer may look like today.

New composite sketches have gone up on billboards across Los Angeles as police intensify their hunt for the “Grim Sleeper,” a serial killer suspected of murdering 11 women since 1985.

“It’s just another creative effort to try to shake loose some information because we believe he’s still around and in the southern L.A. area,” said LAPD Det. Dennis Kilcoyne, who has been tracking the case for years.

Kilcoyne said police have been flooded with calls since the new billboards and sketches went up, but they've had no concrete leads. Kilcoyne said regular sightings are expected when new sketches go up, and he hopes one of them could lead them to their man.

For two decades the “Grim Sleeper” – nicknamed for the length of time between his attacks – has been targeting black women, some who worked as prostitutes, police say.

Examine CNN's interactive evidence case file on the "Grim Sleeper"

Police have the killer’s DNA and his fingerprint, but haven’t been able to make a match to a suspect. A 911 call made in 1987 reporting one of the murders led police to a van they believe was involved. But the trail went cold.

Officials have struggled to find new leads partially because the changing makeup of the neighborhood where the crimes were committed makes it unlikely that any possible witnesses are still around.

“We could not find anyone,” Kilcoyne said.

Investigators are hoping the sketches, along with a $500,000 reward offered by the Los Angeles City Council, will turn up some leads. The suspect is described as a black male with black or graying black hair and between 45 and 60 years old.

In one of the sketches the man’s face appears worn and aged, and in another he is a bit heavier. The third photo is based on the description given by the only woman known to police to have escaped the “Grim Sleeper’s” grasp when she was attacked in 1988.

“She got a look at the guy and sat down with an artist and gave a composite of a young man,” Kilcoyne said of sole survivor. “We took that and had one of our artists with the police department here give us his version of what he would look like now.”

Kilcoyne hopes the new sketches and the seven billboards scattered plastered southern L.A. as well as two digital ones on the 91 Freeway in Compton may finally bring the killer to justice.

Still, Kilcoyne continues to pull at the threads of the case, which has frustrated him for years. He is notified any time victims similar to the Grim Sleeper’s have been found dead. He tries to cross-reference them to see if they are connected. So far, he’s had no luck.

soundoff (96 Responses)
  1. Keith Johannson

    Damn that's me!

    May 5, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jen

    police could just trace the shoe polish the moron "Master of Disguise" leaves on his victims.

    May 5, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
  3. jen

    oh he's been spotted. Kash Heed had to suddenly resign as B.C.Solicitor General again. Former high flying West Vancouver police chief isn't quite as dark as the sketches but his photo's a match.

    May 5, 2010 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. BC in BA

    To bad they'll never catch him now. It was obviously Nipsey Russell.

    May 5, 2010 at 7:02 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Susan in Durham

    The best they can do is hope someone remembers something and remembers someone...stranger things have happened. If this guy's DNA or print aren't in a database, he's probably not been caught for any other crimes, so there's just this hope that they find him based on the sketch. If I looked like the guy in the sketch and they questioned me, I'd be happy to talk to them and get myself cleared especially if it helps ultimately bring the guy who's wanted to justice.

    May 5, 2010 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. JDawg

    That's Ashy Larry's Dad on the left.

    May 5, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
  7. dmo

    try lookin in atlanta, detroit, philly or new oreleans (maybe chicago

    May 5, 2010 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
  8. elimo

    Well that's not helpful at all. Those sketches look like three totally different men. I could point out a few guys in my own neighborhood that look very similar...and I live in Miami.

    May 5, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  9. a person

    that man looks NOTHING like morgan freeman or don cheadle or nelson mandela. you guys need to grow up

    May 5, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  10. april

    i hate to say it...but it's bill cosby.

    May 5, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  11. James

    The drawing on the far right is a spitting image of Sidney Poitier. If Mr. Poitier is the person responsible, I want the reward money for identifying him!

    May 5, 2010 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  12. lolumentary

    Are they paying the the reward in IOU's ?

    May 5, 2010 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
  13. duckie

    To getalife.com: Maybe the police should be checking out the older blac kmen in your family

    May 5, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  14. sheila

    If you look at the victims of the grim sleeper you will see that they are black women...The sketch was drawn based on his one and only living witness...so thats as accurate as you can get without having a photo of the guy...so what you are saying is that this perp looks like every other black man? maybe,he looks exactly like the grim sleeper..How do we know? and maybe this will catch the guy..Maybe someone that knows him will remember that this man had a certain car at that time and looks kind of like the sketch and that he had family with the color of the house the victim described...I,for one,will be very happy if hes caught because of the renewed publicity..these victims and their loved ones need closure..

    May 5, 2010 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Steve

    Morgan Freeman HAHAHAHA Bill Cosby HAHAHA whooooo....heh..I hope he knocks on your mothers door.

    Maybe you serial humorists could push yourselves a little and evince the decency and self restraint of a reasonably competent twelve year old kid.

    May 5, 2010 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
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