Investigators Check Possible Links Between East Coast Women’s Murders


The murder of a woman whose body was found inside a suitcase this month near Atlantic City, N.J., bears a striking resemblance to the killings of four prostitutes whose bodies were found in a marsh in the same area in 2006, says the Philadelphia Daily News. “A young woman, her body abandoned, it stirs up old, bad memories here,” said James Leonard, an Atlantic City lawyer who represented a man authorities questioned in the 2006 cases. “It makes people in the area uneasy. If it is in some way, shape or form related, or if it’s not, that means there are two murderers out there.”

Three-and-a-half hours up the coast, in Suffolk County, N.Y., authorities believe a serial killer is responsible for the deaths of up to 14 women who worked in the sex trade. The Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office reached out to detectives in Suffolk about the killings there. “I know the profilers that have worked both cases, and they’ve said there are similarities and there are differences,” said Jim Clemente, a retired FBI criminal profiler. Clemente said investigators are more than likely discussing whether the latest New Jersey death–the victim was a mother and heroin addict named Tara Alicea– could be connected to the 2006 slayings. “These women are high-risk victims, though, and these cases are hard to profile,” he said.

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