Neal Falls was shot and killed by a prostitute that he tried to strangle last week, and now police believe the deceased man may have been the serial killer responsible for a string of grisly killings in Nevada and Ohio.
Falls was killed on Saturday in West Virginia after he tried to strangle a prostitute he arranged through an online classified ad. The woman was able to break free and grab his pistol, shooting him to death.
Police then made an even more chilling discovery — a set of tools that made it appear that Neal Falls was a seasoned killer. Inside his car they found a machete, shovel, knives, a bulletproof vest, and many sets of handcuffs. Falls also had a list of names of escorts.
Lt. Steve Cooper of the Charleston, West Virginia, police department, said Falls nearly killed the prostitute he attacked as well.
“Nearly immediately after he stepped into her apartment, he said ‘live or die’ and a struggle ensued,” Cooper said, via The Huffington Post. “[Falls] laid his gun on a counter so that he could get a firmer grip around the victim’s throat with both his hands and she was able to scoop that weapon up and fire one round, killing Mr. Falls.”
Investigators now believe that Neal Falls may be the same serial killer responsible for a series of dismemberment deaths in Henderson, Nevada, just outside of Las Vegas.
Falls had lived in Henderson close to a decade ago, around the same time that four escorts went missing. Their dismembered remains were later found, though police had not identified a suspect in the killings.
These are not the only serial killings now linked to Neal Falls. Investigators are looking into whether he is also responsible for a series of disappearances in Chillicothe, Ohio, not far from where Falls was killed.
Six women had disappeared from the small town in the last 13 months, prompting Sheriff George Lavender to vow he would find the killer.
“If you’re … coming down here to do dirty things in our community, leave,” the sheriff said. “Because we’re going to drive you out or you’ll be in jail. We are going to take back our streets and we’re going to make this work. Chillicothe was a great town and it’s going to be great again.”
Police have not yet officially connected Neal Falls to serial killings in Nevada or Chillicothe, but said the investigation is ongoing.
[Photos via WCHS TV 8]