Tag Archives: Rape

Killing with Impunity

By now you have probably heard, police have found ten bodies inside and east Cleveland home.

The resident, Anthony Sowell, was arrested by Cleveland police earlier this week after a short manhunt. Sowell, a convicted rapist, was found not far from the home.

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He previously served 15 years for rape and was being monitored by police when he was accused of raping and strangling a neighborhood woman he lured into his house with an offer of alcohol.

For days, investigators have been dismantling Sowell’s home, finding remains throughout. Neighbors reported a foul smell, which was mistakenly attributed to a sausage shop, located next door.

I think everyone is wondering, how could this happen? How does a man kill ten people, six identified so far as women, without being discovered?

The case has raised some questions about the police response to the rape report and the ongoing monitoring Sowell was supposed to receive as a sex offender. From what I’ve read, this doesn’t appear to be a case of police negligence.

Police followed up on the rape report, but had a difficult time connecting with the victim. Meanwhile, he was subject to regular home visits, one shortly before his arrest.

On the other hand, it does raise the question, are Cleveland police taking crime reports seriously in poor, African American neighborhoods?

Best-Selling book “The Devil in the White City” tells the story of H.H. Homes, a serial killer who took advantage of the excitement surrounding the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair to murder nine women.

It’s clear that in this case a bad man was able to take advantage of the chaos resulting from the foreclosure crisis and extreme poverty that is plaguing Cleveland.

How sad for those women, mothers and daughters.

How sad for the others who wait to hear about missing loved ones.

How sad for a community whose fabric has been blown apart.

-AS

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