Saturday, August 1, 2015

Police: Kensington strangulations may be connected

Philadelphia Police located a woman yesterday who claimed to be choked to the point of unconsciousness last month in the same abandoned property in Kensington where a woman was found strangled to death Saturday.

Police: Kensington strangulations may be connected

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This sketch is of a male wanted for questioning regarding two homicides and a sexual assault.
This sketch is of a male wanted for questioning regarding two homicides and a sexual assault.

Philadelphia Police located a woman yesterday who claimed to be choked to the point of unconsciousness last month in the same abandoned property in Kensington where a woman was found strangled to death Saturday.

Now, police are looking into the possibility that one man may be responsible for both of those heinous crimes as well as a third, similar strangulation murder that occurred earlier this month.

On Saturday, the body of Nicole Piacentini, 35, was found partially clothed in the rear of an abandon three-story house on Cumberland Street near Jasper around 4 p.m., police said. Her cause of death has been determined as manual strangulation.

Just 10 days prior and less than a mile away, Elaine Goldberg, 21, was found partially clothed and manually strangled in an abandoned lot on Ruth Street near Hart Lane, police said.

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Police believe both victims had sexual encounters with their assailant, but they have yet to determine if those encounters were forced or consensual. Both women have a history of drug abuse.

Yesterday, police located a woman who claimed she had been taken to the same Kensington property where Piacentini was found in early October by a man who strangled her to the point of unconsciousness. They would not confirm if the woman was a prostitute but they did say she went voluntarily with her attacker.

Police are awaiting testing on physical and forensic results from the murder scenes. In the meantime, they believe the crimes could be connected because all of the victims were white females who were all strangled in abandon lots within a four-block radius.

The surviving victim described the suspect as a black or Latino man in his late 20s or early 30s. He is between 5-feet-8 and 6 feet, with a goatee and a short-style haircut. Anyone with information about the suspect's identity is urged to call Homicide Detectives at 215-686-3334.

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Philly Confidential, which covers crime in Philadelphia and the suburbs, is written by Daily News staffers Dana DiFilippo, Stephanie Farr and Vinny Vella.

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