Jury Recommends L.A. Serial Killer ‘The Grim Sleeper’ Be Put to Death

Photo by Al Seib / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
Over a 22-year period, Lonnie David Franklin killed a suspected 16 Black women.

A California jury has delivered their ruling in the case of Lonnie David Franklin, a mass murderer infamously known as The Grim Sleeper.

NBC California reports that yesterday afternoon, the jury recommended the death penalty for Franklin, who has been convicted with killing 10 Black women and girls over the span of a 22-year period, though it’s suspected he killed up to six more women.

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“We got what we came to get: a just verdict,” said Porter Alexander, one of the victim’s father, to NBC. “I’m glad I lived to see it. It’s a long time coming.” 

Between the years of 1985 and 2007, Franklin, who worked as a garage attendant and garbage collector, routinely approached Black women, the majority of whom were working as prostitutes. He would either strangle or shoot them before leaving their bodies either abandoned on the side of the road or in an alley. There was a 14-year break during his killing spree between 1988 and 2002, earning him the nickname “The Grim Sleeper.”

A district attorney brought forth evidence connecting Franklin to five more murders (some of which occurred after he was arrested but while he was out on penalty), though prosecutors declined to charge him with those killings lest it delay the trial further.

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“[The killings] were so vicious, they were so calculated and they were so demeaning,” Deputy District Attorney Beth Silverman said during closing arguments.

A final sentencing is scheduled for August 10.

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