An Ohio college student, Sierah Joghin, went missing while riding her bike on a country road. The 20-year-old’s body would later be discovered in a cornfield, and 57-year-old James Worley would be arrested for her murder.
However, this isn’t the first time that Worley has been arrested. In an eerily similar case, a 26-year-old woman was abducted by Worley back in 1990. She was also riding her bike at the time of the abduction but was able to escape after an intense struggle with her abductor. Though Worley was found guilty of the abduction, he would only spend three years in prison and would later tell a therapist, “He had learned from each abduction he had done and the next one he was going to bury.”
The Daily Mail reports that police are looking into the possibility that James Worley may have been a serial killer or serial abductor. When searching Worley’s home, police found a “secret dungeon” under a hay bale that contained restraints, women’s underwear, and a blood-stained refrigerator. The police say that Worley has a past when it comes to abducting women as he was convicted of the offense in 1990.
— Alexandra Montgomery (@alexandrawtol) July 25, 2016
In the abduction case, Worley’s victim, Robin Gardner, who was 26-years-old at the time of the incident, says she was riding her bike on a rural road when Worley hit her with his truck from behind. She says that the crash caused her to tumble into a ditch. Worley then exited his truck and came up behind her. He asked if she was okay before hitting her over the head.
Worley then reportedly dragged the young woman to the side of his truck while threatening to kill her. He then proceeded to grab a pair of handcuffs from his glove compartment. However, Gardner says she did not go down without a fight and began screaming a “blood-curdling scream, a scream I didn’t know I had in me.” She began fighting her attacker, and a passing motorcycle noticed her distress. She was able to break free from Worley and jumped on the back of the motorcycle and was taken to safety.
— The Toledo Blade (@toledonews) July 22, 2016
Worley was convicted of the assault and abduction, but he only served three years behind bars. During his time in prison, he was forced to speak with a therapist. The therapist noted that at one point in a session, Worley had detailed that he “learned from each abduction” and that “the next one he was going to bury.” These statements seemingly indicated that there were other abduction victims beyond Gardner, but no women were ever identified. Therefore, in December of 1993, Worley was released on parole.
— Stephanie Wade (@stephmwade) July 22, 2016
Garner says that she is not at all shocked that Worley was arrested again, noting that she believes her abductor had “done it before” and “would do it again.”
“I think he’s done it before and after me.”
Now, the police are tasked with identifying if there are other victims out there as the evidence suggests there may be other women who were attacked by Worley. The Toledo Blade reports that police are concerned about the possibility of other victims after finding a hidden “dungeon” on Worley’s property. In the hidden room, police found restraints, as well as a carpet-lined refrigerator stained with blood and bloody women’s underwear.
The investigators say that serial offenders like Worley like to keep trophies, and the underwear could be a symbol of other victims.
“Worley fits the profile of a serial offender and could potentially have additional unknown victims who could have been kept at the above described location.”
Investigators also reveal that other concerning items were located on property owned by Worley.
“Authorities also found rope, tape, zip ties, handcuffs, several firearms and ammunition. Multiple video and still image recording devices and film were collected, though their contents have not yet been released. They recovered various items and clothing and jewelry from several locations on the property.”
The investigation is still ongoing, and Worley is being held on charges of aggravated assault and murder.
[Image by Fulton County Sheriff’s Department via The Blade via AP Photo]