DNA Ties 'Serial Predator' to Rapes, Murders

Beck, 25, was found partially clothed in an alleyway Nov 1, 2004. She had been strangled. Campbell, 44, was found naked on a roadway Oct. 24, 2007. Authorities have not revealed exactly how Campbell was murdered -- instead simply saying her death was the result of a violent homicide. Both women were transients with histories of drug abuse and prostitution.

A clearer profile of the suspect began to emerge after the August kidnapping and rape, in which the Benson allegedly pulled alongside a 47-year-old Hispanic woman near a busy intersection and jumped out of a white, four-door sedan, according to the Mesa police. The woman struggled with the suspect, but was ultimately pulled into the car and brought to an unknown place where she was sexually assaulted.

The woman, left naked after the assault, was able to flee on foot. She hailed a cab as she dressed herself and was driven to her home, where she called police. DNA was recovered in the sexual assault examination that linked her attacker to the previous homicides.

Before identifying Benson, police recently released some details about the suspect provided by the victim. He was between 25 and 35 years old, about 5 feet 8 inches tall and had short dark hair.

A fourth crime, this one in nearby Phoenix, has also been linked to Benson through DNA. On Nov. 4, a 35-year-old Phoenix woman was abducted, taken to an unknown location, raped and beaten. The woman was ultimately found by a passerby.

Benson's arrest is not the first involving a serial predator terrorizing the Maricopa County area in the past few years.

In September 2007, a jury convicted Mark Goudeau, 43, on 19 charges tied to an attack on two sisters in a Phoenix park. He was sentenced to 438 years in prison for those charges but still faces nine additional murder counts for a string of shootings that began in 2005 that earned him the nickname the "Baseline Killer." Prosecutors in Arizona expect to seek the death penalty against Goudeau on the murder charges.

Dale Hausner, 35, faces eight murder counts after his roommate, Samuel Dieteman, entered a guilty plea and agreed to testify against Hausner in his murder trial to potentially avoid a death sentence of his own. The two are accused of randomly shooting at people and animals in serial shootings from 2005 to 2006 that killed eight and wounded 17 more. The pair is also accused of killing several animals.

When authorities arrested the roommates, they found newspaper clippings about the police investigation as well as a map that detailed the locations of some attacks.

Mesa police said Wednesday that they believe Benson may have been involved in other attacks and may not have always acted alone.

A third, unsolved recent murder with similarities to the Beck and Campbell cases has not been connected to the suspect by DNA. Elisa Lea Dewakuku was found dead in an irrigation canal Nov. 1. Dewakuku had been strangled and had drugs in her system, according to police.

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