A serial rapist claims victims in Buffalo, New York, and its suburbs.
For more than twenty years, a cunning serial rapist has prowled Buffalo, New York, and its suburbs. A female victim, whose has chosen to have her identity concealed, recalled the horrific events of her attack:
The reign of terror had only begun. A few months later, in June of 1988, the rapist was lying in wait as a 16-year-old girl walked to school along an isolated railroad track. According to Lieutenant P.W. Reinig of the Buffalo Police Department, once again the assailant double-wrapped a rope around his victim’s neck and taped her eyes shut:
Within a few months, a fourth victim had been raped. Each described the rapist as a short, stocky man in his mid-30s who had a mustache. Four months passed. Then, he claimed a fifth victim in a secluded location in Amherst, New York. Captain Thomas Gould of the Amherst Police Department was one of the first investigators to arrive on the scene:
The assailant was described as stocky, with black hair and a black mustache. According to Captain Gould, he attacked two more victims in Amherst:
The woman was found one hour later, still unconscious. Double-wrapped marks on her neck told police who they were dealing with. But this time was different. This time he nearly killed his victim.
22-year-old Linda Yalem was a student at the university in Buffalo when she crossed paths with the rapist. Linda was the seventh known victim, and she was the first to die. By Captain Gould’s account, Linda Yalem was left in the woods with her mouth and nose wrapped tight with duct tape:
After Linda’s murder, the attacks stopped. Authorities wondered if the suspect had moved, gone to prison, or even died. Then four years later, in October of 1999, a 14-year old girl was raped in Buffalo. For Captain Gould and several other law enforcement officials, the reality of the serial rapist’s return proved difficult:
More than 20 years after the so-called “Bike Path Rapist” first struck, police arrested Altemio Sanchez, whose DNA matched samples found at the crime scenes. He was convicted of two murders and sentenced to 75 years to life. During their investigation, police learned that Sanchez had committed two other rapes in the same park where he claimed his first victim. They also discovered that an innocent man was serving a 35-year sentence for those two rapes. The wrongly convicted man, Anthony Capozzi, was finally set free after serving 21 years behind bars.