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Old 10-21-2014, 12:17 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Darren Vann - Serial Killer in Gary, Indiana

Suspected serial killer's confession prompts two-state search for more bodies | Fox News



Never autoplay videos Investigators in two states were taking a fresh look at unsolved murders and missing person reports Tuesday, after the arrest of an Indiana man who police say confessed to killing seven women, led them to a half-dozen bodies and hinted there may be more.

Darren Vann, a 43-year-old former Marine who served time in Texas for sexual assault, was charged Monday in the strangulation death of Afrikka Hardy, 19, a prostitute whose body was found Friday in a bathtub at a Motel 6 in Hammond, roughly 20 miles southeast of Chicago and 10 miles from Gary, the gritty northwest Indiana city where police found six more bodies. Vann, who was taken into custody Saturday, confessed to killing Hardy, told police where the Gary bodies could be found and hinted at other victims since the 1990s, Hammond Police Chief John Doughty said.

"It could go back as far as 20 years based on some statements we have, but that has yet to be corroborated," said Doughty, adding that the killings in Gary slayings appeared to have happened recently, and that Vann told police he "messed up" by murdering a woman outside of Gary.

“We have 10,000 abandoned buildings and can only account for five that were the location of these bodies.”
- Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson

The bodies were found in and around abandoned homes in Gary, a once-thriving steel town that has struggled with crime and poverty for decades. Given Vann's chilling indication of more bodies, and Gary's abundance of abandoned homes, the search for more victims could be lengthy.

“We have 10,000 abandoned buildings and can only account for five that were the location of these bodies,” Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson said. “Do the math.”

Also complicating matters is the fact that Vann is believed to have preyed on prostitutes or others who may have fallen through society's cracks, noted a former high-ranking agent at the FBI’s Chicago office. Unlike teenagers or adults who stay in close contact with relatives, those on society's fringes are not always reported missing quickly.

“If one of them goes missing for days or weeks, it might be that nobody cares,” said Joseph Ways Sr., executive director of the Chicago Crime Commission. “It’s a shame.”

The seven murders Vann is now suspected of committing came to light following a tryst at the Hammond motel. Doughty said Hardy had arranged to meet Vann via a Chicago-area website, and that police were called by someone who attempted to reach Hardy but received text messages that made no sense and that she believed came from the suspect. The police investigation quickly led to Hardy's pimp, and then to Vann, who was taken into custody Saturday and charged on Monday. Authorities said they expect more charges this week in connection with the other victims, whose backgrounds were not immediately revealed.

The body of one victim, Anith Jones, 35, of Merrillville, Ind., was found late Saturday in an abandoned home. She had been missing since Oct. 8. Five additional bodies were found Sunday in other homes. Doughty identified two of the women as Gary residents Teaira Batey, 28, and Christine Williams, 36. Police have not determined the identities of the other three women, including two whose bodies were found on the same block where Jones' body was found.

The specter of a serial killer in the Chicago area brought to mind the notorious murderer John Wayne Gacy, a child entertainer who became known as the "Killer Clown" for luring his victims into his Windy City home before killing them. Gacy was executed in 1994 after being implicated in the murder of 33 men and boys. The total number of people Gacy killed may never be known, as he had moved around the country and later hinted that he was more prolific than police originally believed.

In Vann's case, police in Austin, Texas, where he lived for a time with his former wife, are reviewing missing person reports and unsolved murders to determine whether any may be connected to Vann. Maria Vann, who was married to Vann for 16 years, told The New York Times in a phone interview that she was “lightheaded” at the thought of her former husband’s being responsible for murder.

“I married a man who was kind, intelligent, very relaxed, very nice to everybody,” she told the newspaper. “He was a little bit of a loner. He could be on his own, listening to his own music, for a long time. He would stay at the library a ton of time. He was always by himself.”

Maria Vann said she met Vann in 1991 through friends in Indiana. They later moved to Texas and married in Austin, where he later worked a series of jobs for technology companies and as a security guard, she said. When they moved back to Indiana in 2000, he found work at a steel mill and a casino.

“That’s when things started getting kind of shaky,” Vann told the newspaper. “I didn’t want to be with him anymore. He had single friends. There were signs that he was going with somebody else.”

In 2006, Maria Vann returned to Texas. Darren Vann followed her and found work, despite their separation. The couple later divorced in 2011. Vann said she cut off contact with Darren Vann after she found out about his sexual assault conviction in 2009.

Vann is registered as a sex offender in Texas, where the Department of Public Safety listed his risk of attacking someone again as "low." He did not register in Indiana. Court records in Travis County, Texas, indicate he served a five-year prison sentence, with credit for the 15 months he was in jail awaiting trial, after pleading guilty in 2009 to sexually assaulting a woman at an Austin apartment two years earlier.

The woman told police that she went to Vann's apartment, where he asked if she was a police officer. After she told him no, he knocked her down, strangled her, hit her several times in the face and told her he could kill her. He then raped her. Vann allowed the woman to leave and she called police the next day.

The circumstances of that case had similarities to Hardy's death, according to the victim's mother and court records.

Lori Townsend said police told her that Vann asked her daughter to perform a certain sex act, and "when she said 'no' and put up a fight, he snapped and strangled her."

Vann told police Hardy began to fight during sex and that he strangled her with his hands and an extension cord, the probable cause affidavit says.

"This man is sick," Townsend said from her home in Colorado.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Old 10-21-2014, 01:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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groundsupport, you're a little creepy, aren't ya
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Old 10-21-2014, 01:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Serial killers scare me, the only thing that scares me more are spiders and crabzilla...or a crabzilla that shoots spiders out of their mouth.
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Old 10-21-2014, 01:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Don't mess with Crabzilla.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Messed up what they're finding out. I live 10 mins from Gary, IN, terrible story.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Gary is an embarassment to Indiana. I wish Illinois would just take that city.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Gary, Indiana is where Michael Jackson is from


What a shock
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:23 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Gary is an embarassment to Indiana. I wish Illinois would just take that city.
Illinois already has enough serial killers, gang members and mafia contract hitters to deal with...
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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What's crazy is that these cops now have to search "10,000" abandoned homes just to be certain their isn't more victims.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:31 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Fantastic...now all the killer clown dreams are going to start again...thanks groundsupport...
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:32 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Fantastic...now all the killer clown dreams are going to start again...thanks groundsupport...
I didn't make you click on the thread and read it. Besides, you should be more affraid on Crabzilla, he is still on the loose.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:39 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I didn't make you click on the thread and read it. Besides, you should be more affraid on Crabzilla, he is still on the loose.
Quoted for truth
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:40 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Did Vann live in a van down by the river??
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:43 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Did Vann live in a van down by the river??
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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What state has the most vicious serial killer?
Yea that could be a good topic that someone can create.
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:44 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Did Vann live in a van down by the river??
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Old 10-21-2014, 02:44 PM   #17 (permalink)
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What state has the most vicious serial killer?
Yea that could be a good topic that someone can create.
I'm guessing Iowa
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Old 10-21-2014, 06:40 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I am thinking California
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Old 10-21-2014, 06:43 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Florida....
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Old 10-21-2014, 06:48 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Darren Vann
.......damn
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Old 10-21-2014, 07:22 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I searched Gary, Indiana and this is what came up. Not even kidding...

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Old 10-21-2014, 08:17 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I searched Gary, Indiana and this is what came up. Not even kidding...

Gary Indiana probably makes a ton of money from tourism...
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Old 10-21-2014, 09:17 PM   #23 (permalink)
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If the riverboat left the area slong with fireworks, what else foes NW Indiana have?
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Old 10-21-2014, 09:23 PM   #24 (permalink)
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If the riverboat left the area slong with fireworks, what else foes NW Indiana have?
A Serial Killer?
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Old 10-22-2014, 02:38 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
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I searched Gary, Indiana and this is what came up. Not even kidding...

Looks like a lovely place
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