In Ohio's Rundown Ex-Capital, Fears of a Serial Killer

4 women found dead near Chillicothe's waterways over year
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2015 1:44 PM CDT
In Ohio's Rundown Ex-Capital, Fears of a Serial Killer
The main street of Chillicothe, Ohio, is seen in this 2006 photo.   (Wikimedia)

Chillicothe was the capital of Ohio some 200 years ago. Things have gone downhill from there. But amid poverty and heroin woes, the city of 21,000 has "turned for the worst," Jessica Sayre tells the Washington Post. Her 26-year-old sister, Tiffany, a sex worker battling a drug problem, went missing from a local motel on May 11. Her naked body was found wrapped in a sheet in a drainage pipe on Saturday, making her the fourth woman to turn up dead near Chillicothe's waterways in the last year. At least two more women have vanished, leading some to fear a serial killer is on the loose. "I don't want to come out and say 'yes, we have a serial killer,'" says an officer, but he admits it's possible. The location of the women's bodies isn't the only evidence linking the cases.

Most of the victims had drug issues and some were prostitutes; some even knew each other, reports the Post, which rounded up coverage from the Columbus Dispatch and Huffington Post. Friends Charlotte Trego, 27, and Tameka Lynch, 30, were the first to disappear, separately, on May 3, 2014. Lynch was found dead of a suspected drug overdose in a creek weeks later; her mom told the Dispatch she was afraid of water. Wanda Lemons, 38; Shasta Himelrick, 20; and Timberly Claytor later vanished; the bodies of the latter two were ultimately found. Himelrick was pregnant; the five other women all had children. Sayre's death, ruled a murder, helped launch a task force now investigating all six cases; the cases of three missing women from nearby Portsmouth and Columbus may also get a look. For more, head to the Post. (More Ohio stories.)

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