Alleged Cleveland Serial Killer May Have Struck in SoCal: FBI

A Cleveland man accused of being a serial killer was stationed at Camp Pendleton in 1985. Now, authorities are looking for any connections to Southern California.

By Thomas J. Sheeran
|  Tuesday, Nov 10, 2009  |  Updated 11:15 AM PDT
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Alleged Cleveland Serial Killer May Have Struck in SoCal: FBI

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The home of Anthony Sowell is seen on Nov. 4, 2009, in Cleveland, Ohio.

Authorities are investigating whether a suspected serial killer whose home and yard harbored the remains of at least 11 people is connected to any killings in places he lived while in the military, including Southern California.

The FBI will investigate any leads in the case against Anthony Sowell, 50, who served in the Marines from 1978 to 1985, said Scott Wilson, an FBI spokesman in Cleveland.

Sowell's was stationed at Camp Pendleton from Jan. 15 to 18, 1985, the North County Times reported.

FBI behavioral specialists visited the Sowell property during the weekend and will try to develop a profile of the killings that could help determine whether investigations need to be opened or reopened elsewhere, Wilson said.

Sowell was also stationed at various times at Parris Island, S.C.; Cherry Point, N.C.; and Okinawa, Japan.

Sowell has been charged in Cleveland with five counts of aggravated murder in connection with the bodies found at the home. He was indicted Monday on one count of attempted murder, two counts of rape, two counts of kidnapping and two counts of felonious assault in an alleged attack Sept. 22 that led to the search of his home.

The FBI will review its national database of unsolved crimes for any clues to possible connections to Sowell, particularly at his military service locations, Wilson said. The first step is to get a detailed timeline of his service, Wilson said.

Police in Coronado, Calif., near Camp Pendleton, said a woman told them that she saw Sowell's mug shot on TV and was sure he had raped her in 1979.

Officers talked with the woman but were unable to confirm her story because rape investigation records from 30 years ago have been thrown out, said Jesus Ochoa, Coronado police commander.

"She seemed credible," he said.

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