Despite popular representations of killers who just can't stop murdering, serial killer sprees can often stop for years at a time. In those cases, a clutch of bodies is found with evidence that indicates that a single serial killer murdered them all within a short time frame. But if no other evidence comes forward after that, there's not much police can do except wait for the next spree. Even if authorities can figure out who might have committed multiple murders, once a serial killer has been identified, they often go to ground or leave the area.
There are several active serial killer sprees that are either ongoing, or have just recently have ended - meaning they could start again any time. In all cases, the current serial killers are still on the loose today. A few sprees, like the "smiley face murders," might not be killings at all, but suspicious accidents that only seem related. Others stories involve single murders that may or may not be connected to a serial killer who has struck before, like the Eastbound Strangler or the Chillicothe Murders.Whatever the case, serial killings are rare - but they do happen. Here are eight sprees that might still be going on. Hopefully police can catch these murderers before they strike again.
The Serial Street Shooter
In the summer of 2016, police in Phoenix, Arizona began urgently searching for a murderer they dubbed the "Serial Street Shooter." From March to July, the assailant managed to kill seven people and wound two others (ranging in age from late teens to early 60s), each time with a semi-automatic handgun. The shooter always attacked at night, and was seen by multiple witnesses standing outside of his car.
Although the killings all happened around the low-income neighborhood of Maryvale, none of the victims seem to be connected to each other or the suspect. The police department and district attorney's office announced they would offer a $30,000 reward to anyone with any information that could help them catch the Serial Street Shooter.
The Long Island Serial Killer
Long Island's remote Gilgo Beach was the scene of a horror show in December 2010. That's when a Suffolk County police officer, looking for the remains of a missing woman, found a mass grave of 10 people, including a child, stretched across the sand spit. With seven other suspected victims found in the New York area, the so-called Long Island Serial Killer (also called the Gilgo Beach Killer) is one of the most prolific serial killers currently at large, and two more possible victims were found as late as 2013.
The case is currently at a standstill, with victims' families desperate for closure. The NYPD had to bring in the FBI for help.
The Chillicothe Killer
The small Ohio town of Chillicothe has been the scene of at least six female disappearances, with four bodies found dumped in local creeks or streams. The most recent victim was found in June 2015. The first victim disappeared a year earlier. Several of the women were involved in sex work, and it's possible they were contacted online, killed, and moved after their deaths.
Police believe the shooting of a serial killer a month later in Charleston might be related, though no connection has been found as of yet.
The Smiley Face Killer
Supposedly responsible for the drowning of over 40 students in the Midwest and on the east coast since 1997, the Smiley Face Killer plunges young, intoxicated, virile college men into icy water, and leaves a smiley face drawn on a wall near where the bodies were dumped. However, it's not at all clear if there actually is a Smiley Face Killer, or if the victims didn't drown due to misadventure, possibly brought on by being drunk.Two victims have been identified as homicides, but no suspect has ever been found in either death. As recently as 2016, the drowning of 22-year-old Harvard student Zach Marr (last seen outside a bar in Boston) was attributed to the Smiley Face Killer, with another death pinned on the killer in 2015. Both police and pathologists continue to argue whether there's a killer or network of killers on the loose, or just a series of coincidental accidents.