At-Large Serial Killer Turns Neighborhood Into 'Ghost Town'

Trace explores the situation in Maryvale, Arizona
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2016 11:17 AM CDT
Updated Aug 20, 2016 4:55 PM CDT
How a Serial Killer Has Changed an Ariz. Neighborhood
Neighborhood patrol officers walk Maryvale streets. A sketch of the suspect is nearby.   (AP Photo/Matt York)

A serial killer who has shot at least nine people since March remains at large in the Phoenix area, and authorities don't have a ton to go on. He's white or Hispanic, drives a black car, and seemingly chooses his victims at random on the streets at night. All of those shot have been black or Hispanic, and most have been hit in the Latino neighborhood of Maryvale. While the shooter's motive is uncertain, one thing that is clear is his effect on this working-class neighborhood, as a story at the Trace explores. In an area where summer temperatures routinely push 100 degrees, the streets typically come alive in the cooler evenings with barbecues, block parties, and kids on bikes.

"Lately, however, Maryvale has felt like a ghost town when the sun goes down," writes Eric Markowitz. Parents keep their kids in, people are reluctant to walk their dogs, residents are arming themselves or at least talking about it—in short, paranoia abounds. "You know like when you’re a little kid and you want to run and turn the lights on real quick because you think something’s chasing you?" says a 31-year-old woman. "That’s the feeling you get when you come out of your car to go into the house.” Click for the full story, which includes theories about the killer and a police official describing "a complex investigation with a lot of moving parts." (More Phoenix stories.)

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