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« Possible Hazing Incident May Have Crossed Criminal Lines | Main | Notes from the February 24, 2009 Weekly Police Commission Meeting »

February 25, 2009


The LAPD made a very bad decision by releasing the voice of this caller to the public, if they believe he is merely a witness, one who did the right thing by reporting a crime to the police, and not the perpetrator of the crime.

I always (wrongly now, I see) assumed that phone calls made to the LAPD weren't saved, especially when made from a pay phone. As a resident of a bad part of LA, I have called in tips in the past - never from my home phone or mobile, but always from a pay phone. Now that I know my voice could be saved for 22 years and then broadcast all over the media with pleas to identify me as the anonymous witness, I will never ever ever be a helpful phone witness to the LAPD again.

This is as troublesome as finding out that the rape id kits are stacked up going back years, sometimes with evidence not even being tested until long after the statute of limitations has expired for criminal prosecution. If I was a victim of a violent crime, I would seriously consider not even reporting it, knowing how the LAPD treats both crime victims and Good Samaritan witnesses.


Attitudes like that are exactly why the area you live in is a bad area. If residents would start taking the lead instead of ignoring crime, your area might get better. Don't blame it on the police because you don't have the morals to stand up for whats right.

Based on voice inflection and stress analyzation, the person on the tape is NOT the killer. He is a local resident. He has a voice consistent with that of an African American with a distinct Los Angeles accent, age 38-42, possible smoker. Given that this is from 1987 when LAPD and the black community were at odds, he likely waited 30 minutes to call because he was simply afraid. I agree, bad move by LAPD to release tape. This is not someone reporting a fender bender, this is a major murder case and any veiled hint of the caller being a suspect can instigate a witch hunt, putting the caller at risk. The killer is likely to travel by bus and rail. LAPD should check simple harassment and disorderly persons offenses against females taking place on the public transit system.


This mope that made the phone call wasn't scared, in fact, he was quite the opposite.

It probably took him 30 minutes to find a working payphone. Remember, this call was made "pre-cellie".

WOW! Dan Davis must be a real Detective to come up with a statement like he did. Ha-Ha at least you have a good imagionation. Maybe you should apply for the department. Just don't give them your theory on serial killers.


I'm Larry Harnisch and I run the Daily Mirror blog at the L.A. Times. I've enhanced the audio and made a transcription that I'll be posting tomorrow at 6 a.m.

Question: Did the original detectives photograph the front of the van? I'm curious as to whether it had a front plate. The caller seems to have had excellent vision to be able to make out the make, color and license plate of the vehicle in that alley about midnight.

And whoever parked the van hopped the concrete bumper and ran it into the wall. Take a look.

Edwina, don't use 911 for your tips and you'll be fine.

Dan, how did you come up with that? What does a Los Angeles accent sound like? Have you ever heard recordings of serial killers? They don't register stress because they have different moral codes that don't make them feel guilty (stress). I do agree that he could have been in prison or he could have gone out of state/area. Maybe other jurisdictions have similar crimes during his hiatus.

Larry, good point on the ability to see the license plate. Also, was the pay phone in a position so the caller could have even seen the van?

The WPD waited almost two years before they released the recording of BTK calling in a homicide. Once the recording was played BTK disappeared for 25 years. When he was captured they learned his wife and his barber both recognized his voice, but didn't make the connection. Of course they should release the voice of the caller. Odds are at least 50/50 it's the voice of the killer. The fact that he disappeared for years may only mean something scared him into thinking he might have made a mistake. That's what happened with BTK, and maybe this killer too. The fact that he's killing what he seems to think are bad girls is a BIG clue. They need to take this tape to every church and ask that it be played at the Sunday service. No warning ahead of the recording. Ask people to bow their head and listen for a moment. That way there's not the mental block beforehand like BTK's wife and barber had.

Also, the fact that no DNA even possible matching a relative might suggest not only is the killer's family law abiding, but the killer might seem that way too.

How about setting up a sting operation where several women LAPD are puposely on the Western Ave. at night? Any one soliciting them should be taken in for that. Hopefully the Grim Sleeper is caught that way...

I would like to know what date the church became no longer in service, and if the preacher and congregation have moved to a new location?

Love the comment section. Hate the fact that no one comes in and addresses or questions and concerns.

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