A potential suspect is arrested in connection to Gainesville student murders: Part 5

Investigator Don Maines said they received several tips about a young man who’d been arrested and charged with assaulting his grandmother. But an issue arose when they tested his blood.
7:01 | 04/13/21

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:

{{nextVideo.title}}

{{nextVideo.description}}

Skip to this video now

Now Playing:

{{currentVideo.title}}

Comments
Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for A potential suspect is arrested in connection to Gainesville student murders: Part 5
A week after the murders, somebody decided to take a portion of the 34th street wall, which is a graffiti wall that everybody prints everything on and paints. They went out and printed the five names on it. It was a place for fraternity boys to spray paint stupid things. And then it became this place of great significance to all of us. The names of the five victims are memorialized. Sonja Larson, Christina Powell, crista Hoyt, Tracy Paules, and Manny Taboada. The details of the terror he put her through -- was she so scared? Was she by herself? That terror is what -- I can't -- I can't get past that. I wanted to die actually. I just wanted to be with Sonja. I wanted to see Sonja again in heaven, so -- Each passing hour we feel much more confident that we will be able to bring this case to successful closure. There are now more than 100 law enforcement officers working in search of a serial killer. We're getting a tremendous amount of information from people that are calling in suspicious activity, especially suspicious people. We were getting a lot of tips focusing on Ed Humphrey as a person of interest. Ed Humphrey had graduated from high school and he was a freshman at the university of Florida. He had mental health issues for which he had to take medication. Apparently, he was off his medication. How old is he about? Is he armed? And so there had been a lot of reports coming into the police about this guy looking dangerous. Ed was hanging out in the woods, dressed in camouflage clothing. Ed was known to carry knives. He has an episode with his grandmother. It's what we now would call domestic violence. He's charged with beating his grandmother in the face, causing fractures and bruises. And so we were able to take him into custody, detain him. Edward Louis Humphrey, 18-year-old first-year university of Florida student was arrested yesterday. He looked like he was out of it. He looked like he was drugged. If there's a look for a serial killer, he was it. He had these scars over his face. He was in a really bad car accident and got all those scars from the car accident. He suffers from bipolar mood disorder. He was manic at the time. He was off his lithium, and they interrogated him for hours in that situation. And it's basically the result of that they say, "Well, gee, he's a suspect." All the news media is talking about him. Humphrey had made other students living here nervous. They were pretty scared of the guy. He would listen to loud heavy rock music and would go out for long periods at night. Law enforcers continue to look for evidence that may link Humphrey to the five murders, most recently searching woods where Humphrey had been seen. We had a lot of evidence, a lot of physical evidence that, according to our technology at the time, placed Ed at some of these scenes. Some fiber, some hairs. They couldn't say definitively it was Ed's hair, but they couldn't say it wasn't. When they went to his residence where he lived with his grandmother, they found magazines about knives, girls, and guns and all these kinds of materials. And he ends up going to court, and he's kept there on an enormous bond. At the hearing the judge refused to lower Humphrey's $1 million bond. $1 million may sound like a radically high bail amount. And it is if this were a regular assault, but police thought Humphrey might be their man. And they wanted to keep him behind bars until they could make their case. Call it coincidence. Call it whatever you want. As a result of taking Ed Humphrey into custody, the murders stopped. And you breathe a sigh of relief. Wow, it really looked like they had just solved the murders and that they had the guy in their hands. We wanted to believe he was caught, that somebody was caught. It was a huge relief. It was just so good to know that he couldn't do that to anyone else again. Come on, ggators, get up and go. They even had a football game that Saturday, where 75,000 people came and cheered for the gators. Gainesville is trying to get back. We do know that investigators found some physical evidence at the crime scenes and have been asking for blood tests from criminal defendants and students in the Gainesville area. Remember, the killer used dish soap and a towel to clean up the crime scenes. But he still left bodily fluids behind when he raped three of the victims. Back then, DNA was just getting started. So, as far as the suspects was concerned, our easiest way to eliminate them as a possible suspect was to get their blood type. Our perpetrator was referred to as a secretor. If you're a secretor, that means the enzymes in your blood show up in your bodily fluids -- your mucus, your saliva, even your semen. So the crime lab technicians were able to analyze the semen found at the crime scene to figure out the killer's blood type. Whoever had committed those rapes had type "B" blood. And they went to Ed Humphrey, they took a sample of his blood, and his blood came back type "A." That was a big problem. But but there were people on the task force who just could not let go of Humphrey's involvement. And if they really do have the wrong guy behind bars now, that would mean a maniac is still out there. Do you have any leads? Are we safe? The police were getting pressure from the public to do something. I was told, you're not going to believe this, but we have a crime stopper tip. In Shreveport, Louisiana, three people were murdered and the girl's body was mutilated in a manner similar to one of the victims here. I say, hello, sateen, I

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"7:01","description":"Investigator Don Maines said they received several tips about a young man who’d been arrested and charged with assaulting his grandmother. But an issue arose when they tested his blood.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/2020","id":"76985392","title":"A potential suspect is arrested in connection to Gainesville student murders: Part 5","url":"/2020/video/potential-suspect-arrested-connection-gainesville-student-murders-part-76985392"}