Patterico's Pontifications

4/16/2005

L.A. Times Again Ignores Story About Serial Killer in Los Angeles

Filed under: Crime,Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 12:20 pm



The local legal newspaper has broken a story about another possible serial murderer in Los Angeles.

First, some background. A few weeks ago, someone in the Los Angeles Police Department mentioned to me that there might be a serial killer of women in Los Angeles. I wasn’t told many details; only that 11 women (mostly if not all prostitutes), had been killed in South-Central L.A., and that police suspected that it may be the same person who had committed the murders.

I wasn’t told when the murders had happened; it was an off-hand comment in the context of a conversation about another case. But I was surprised that I hadn’t heard something about this in the media. I didn’t mention it on the blog because I wasn’t sure if it was something that I should be repeating, and I didn’t want to interfere in the investigation.

This week, Kevin Roderick reported:

The LAPD’s cold case homicide unit is tracking four unsolved serial rape-murder sprees with eleven female victims, many of them prostitutes, the Daily Journal said in a story Monday. The most recent killing came in 2003. The story’s focus is on the potential of DNA testing in prisons and jails to solve old homicides. There are 9,000 unsolved murders since 1960 on the books in Los Angeles.

I wonder why this story was broken in the Los Angeles Daily Journal, a local legal newspaper. I wonder why I have yet to see one word about it in the L.A. Times. I suppose it’s possible that I missed the Times story, but I don’t think so. I have conducted several searches for the story, and I’m not seeing anything.

If I’m right that the L.A. Times has not run an article about this, then one of two things is true. Either the editors at the L.A. Times are completely missing a huge crime story that is right under their noses — or they just don’t think that writing about a serial murderer of prostitutes is worth the ink.

This is especially ironic when you recall that, last year, the L.A. Times wrote an editorial bemoaning the city’s indifference to the serial murderer of 10 women along Figueroa Street:

The rest of the city is left to ponder another attitude: indifference. Los Angeles’ worst serial killer apparently stalked South L.A. for years without the rest of the city noticing enough to even give him a name. We didn’t talk about an unidentified Figueroa Street Strangler as we did a Freeway Killer, Night Stalker or Hillside Strangler.

At the time, I noted the incredible hypocrisy of blaming citizens for their alleged indifference, given that the only reason we weren’t talking about the Figueroa Street Strangler is because the L.A. Times had never told us about him. The L.A. Times never published a single word about any of the murders committed by that killer — until DNA showed that the man convicted of the crimes was innocent, and the real killer had been found. Before that, the city’s “indifference” to the “Figueroa Street Strangler” was directly attributable to the indifference of the local news media, including the Los Angeles Times.

The paper is showing its indifference again. Where’s the story, L.A. Times editors?

UPDATE AND CORRECTION: The serial murderer discussed in this post actually was the Figueroa Street strangler. So the paper had indeed reported previous developments on this murderer — it was just slow off the mark reporting new developments in the case.

5 Responses to “L.A. Times Again Ignores Story About Serial Killer in Los Angeles”

  1. Got another subscription plea from the LAT in today’s mail. The sole focus is on their entertainment section. Movies-Arts-Theater -Concerts-Clubs. “More fun–For less” they say.

    Interesting: A reference to their editorials is even directed toward entertainment: “The Times prize-winning editorial staff keeps you up-to-date on what’s in and what’s out, what’s opening, what’s coming and where to find it.” Maybe they’re more trustworthy in that venue. Certainly, their fiction writing fits better in that section.

    Reading the LA Times has never been “fun.” But it’s getting more fun watching them sink.

    Rick Wahler (eb351e)

  2. Weekend shorts *
    New items added at the bottom • Dawson’s Books, the oldest bookseller in Los Angeles, celebrates its 100th anniversary this month with an exhibit at the store and Michael Dawson Gallery on Larchmont. The photo (right) is from the 35th annive…

    L.A. Observed (ccf68e)

  3. Weekend shorts *
    New items added at the bottom • Dawson’s Books, the oldest bookseller in Los Angeles, celebrates its 100th anniversary this month with an exhibit at the store and Michael Dawson Gallery on Larchmont. The photo (right) is from the 35th annive…

    L.A. Observed (ccf68e)

  4. Is it just indifference or is there some political calculation? Maybe the Times doesn’t want people to start talking about the rampant prostitution going on in California. Maybe they don’t want law enforcement to feel like they have to do something about prostitution (San Francisco has announced that they won’t even prosecute it). Maybe the Times doen’t want to make the hookers afraid, reducing the supply and driving up the price, and cutting into the profits of gambling establishments and illegal drug dealers (the two main reasons women voluntarily go into prostitution).

    Doc Rampage (b42666)

  5. Weekend shorts *
    New items added at the bottom • Dawson’s Books, the oldest bookseller in Los Angeles, celebrates its 100th anniversary this month with an exhibit at the store and Michael Dawson Gallery on Larchmont. The photo (right) is from the 35th annive…

    L.A. Observed (ccf68e)


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