The city of Cleveland is making the headlines for a string of gruesome crimes against women, including the work of one convicted serial killer. Cleveland authorities are trying to understand why its happening and if there’s anything that can be done prevent the violence.
According to reports,
Anthony Sowell was sentenced to death in 2011 in the murders of 11 women at his home in Cleveland.
Ariel Castro is facing 977 charges of kidnapping, rape and assault after three women escaped from his Cleveland home earlier this year.
Now, Michael Madison, a registered sex offender is in police custody. Madison is believed to have an involvement with three women whose bodies were found wrapped in trash bags in suburban Cleveland. Madison was arrested after a neighbor complained of a foul smell in the neighborhood.
Media reports and statistics suggest that violent and serial crimes are higher in beleaguered cities. Officials say the crimes went unnoticed with the rise of poverty and disintegration of neighborhoods.
Forbes magazine declared Cleveland the ninth-most danger U.S. city in 2012, with 1,363 violent crimes per 100,000 residents. The national median for violent crime averages at 13.9 per 1,000 residents, compared with 3.9 per 1,000 nationally.
“This is what happens when you have poverty,” Ohio Gov. John Kasich told reporters Monday. “It’s what happens when you have individuals who are very dangerous inside the community and somehow lose track of them. It’s about breakdown of neighborhoods, sometimes, where, you know, we don’t always know our neighbors. There’s so much to it.”
Residents in the East Cleveland area are hopeful the community can come together.
“Maybe after all this, maybe this will bring a change to East Cleveland,” said Cleveland resident Vanessa Jones. “Hopefully. Pray for that.”