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Potential serial killer, rapist targeting sex workers on Detroit's east side

Posted at 11:59 AM, Jun 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-06 06:42:04-04

Detroit Police Chief James Craig said they are looking for a potential serial killer and rapist that is operating on the city's east side.

According to police, the chief said they have been in the middle of the investigation which started several months ago, beginning with an incident on March 19 in the 20000 block of Coventry, where the female victim, identified as 52-year-old Nancy Harrison, was totally disrobed. Police say when she was first located, the cause of her death was originally thought to be a drug overdose. However, after further investigation, it was discovered that she suffered blunt force trauma. No further details have been released on her death.

The body of the second victim, Travesene Ellis, was found on May 24 on Linnhurst, between Gratiot and Chalmers on the city's east side.. No further details have been released on her death. She was reported missing on May 15. She was last seen on April 21 in the 13000 block of Linnhurst Street, where her body was later discovered.

Wednesday morning, a woman's decomposed naked body was found inside a vacant home on Mack near Mt. Elliot.

The chief said it wasn't until the murder Wednesday morning that they believe they have the "makings of a serial killer and rapist that's operating on the east side of Detroit."

He believes the suspect is targeting women in their early 50s and luring them to vacant dwellings.

There is no suspect or suspect vehicle description at this time. Although the chief said all three victims are believed to be sex workers,, the family of Harrison say she was not.

The chief also clarified that several weeks ago, there were rumors circulating through social media that there was a serial killer dumping bodies in dumpsters. He said that was incorrect and there was no connection whatsoever.

Police are asking sex workers to come forward with any information.

"We're not here to arrest you, we're going to make sure you're safe," he said.

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