A convicted serial killer known as the “Grim Sleeper” was recently found dead in his California San Quentin State Prison jail cell.
What We Know:
- Lonnie Franklin Jr. was found unresponsive and pronounced dead at 7:43 p.m. inside of his cell on Saturday. According to NBC News, his cause of death is still uncertain as there were reportedly no signs of trauma, the state Corrections Department released in a statement.
- The 67-year-old was convicted of murdering nine women and a teenage girl and attempted murder in Los Angeles in a crime spree which began in 1985 and ended in 2007.
- He gained the infamous nickname “Grim Sleeper” because he took a 14-year break in between murders before he began killing again. He killed seven women between 1985 to 1988 and then killed the remaining two between the years of 2002 to 2007.
- Police say Franklin could have killed even more women as they found him in possession of hundreds of photos of women at the time of his arrest. Prosecutors said they declined to pursue additional charges against Franklin considering the amount of time it would take to prosecute him further.
- The woman who survived one of Franklin’s attacks, testified against him in 2016, telling jurors he raped and hit her. She later directed her rage towards Franklin claiming, should she have died that day, she would have haunted him for the rest of his life.
- A majority of Franklin’s victims were mostly poor, Black women. The former garbage man discarded their bodies in alleys and trash cans. Prosecutors got a break in the case in 2010, when a cold case task force linked his DNA evidence to the murders.
Franklin was sentenced to death for his crimes regardless, so the timing was, if anything, uncanny.