Criminal experts believe one killer theory beginning to make sense - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Anna Marie Hartman

Criminal experts believe one killer theory beginning to make sense

Updated:
Criminologist Dr. Richard Janikowski talks to reporter Anna Marie Hartman. Criminologist Dr. Richard Janikowski talks to reporter Anna Marie Hartman.

When investigators found the six victims murdered in a home on Lester Street, the crime scene was so gruesome it was difficult to comprehend that one person could be responsible for so much violence. 

Wednesday, criminal experts said that theory is starting to make more sense.  Homicide investigators are fairly certain that Jessie Dotson is the only suspect in the Lester Street Massacre.

Criminologist Dr. Richard Janikowski said investigators had to explore every scenario.  

"And there may have been attempts to cover up what really happened and I think that's why at one point investigators were thinking it was gang related as one possibility," Janikowski said.

Janikowski points out that domestic violence is the root cause of 30 percent of all homicides in Memphis. 

"The majority of our homicides involve arguments that people are arguing. Usually there's also drug and alcohol involvement and then a gun," he said said.

The gruesome crime scene on Lester Street immediately made people ask if one person could be responsible for all six brutal murders.

"One person could do it, particularly with children present, and even other adults. You know, if someone points a gun at you everybody freezes," Janikowski said.

Janikowski said if the killer had a semi automatic handgun, he could have shot the victims quickly. 

"He is basically in control of the situation and it's a controlled environment," he said.

Janikowski admitted the massacre on Lester Street is more unusual than most domestic violence cases.

Janikowski said so many homicides begin with arguments among acquaintances.  He said stranger homicide is actually the exception, not the rule.


Click here to e-mail Anna Marie Hartman.

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