Police Seek Suspected Serial Rapist

A police sketch of a serial rape suspect.
A police sketch of a serial rape suspect.

Police say a serial rapist is on the loose in the Coastal Empire. Here is a sketch of the man police suspect raped three women and tried to attack another just in the past month. Victims say he's about 5'8" and weighs between 185 and 200 pounds.

"Detectives are exceptionally concerned about this man," said Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Bucky Burnsed. "They desperately want to get their hands on him, and get him in our custody."

The latest rape happened early Saturday morning at the Plantation IV apartments in Richmond Hill. Around 2am, the rapist approached a women and her two-year-old son with a gun and carjacked them from the parking lot.

Police say the suspect forced her to a secluded location, and raped her. Then he dropped her and her son off a few streets away from her apartment. He escaped without a trace.

A serial rapist is not something the people who live in Plantation IV would have ever expected. "I was shocked, I was really shocked because nothing like that ever happens around here, I was just shocked," resident Betty Jones.

Now everyone is on alert and taking action. "We've handed out warning flyers with what's going on and asking women to be careful," said apartment manager Bobby McNeese.

McNeese hired extra security and police are patrolling the place around the clock. "We want to make sure this doesn't happen again and we watch to catch him," said McNeese.

Richmond Hill police met with Savannah detectives this weekend and again today to discuss the case. They are looking for similarities and trying to find out who the rapist is.

He allegedly attacked two women in Savannah a few weeks ago. One woman was attacked on August 30 at Magnolia Apartments, the second rape happened on September 2 at Edgewater Trace.

"We watch out for each other and I think it's going to be even more so now," said Plantation IV resident Margaret Pye.

Police say women all over the area need to be on guard. Savannah police are also investigating a fourth case involving this suspect, but they haven't released any details about it.

Today they formed a task force to focus even more on finding the rapist. Not only does the description of the suspect match, but so does his car. Police say he's driving a white Dodge Intrepid.

Reported by: Michelle Paynter, mpaynter@wtoc.com