Secret photographs of women who may have been slain by serial killer Rodney Alcala were released by the NYPD Tuesday- a move that may help crack several cold cases.Alcala posed as a photographer and may have lured women to their death by taking their photos.
Relatives of two Manhattan women who may have fallen victim to the notorious killer fumed cops didn't release the pics until after the Daily News reported exclusively on the stash Tuesday.
"They should be in every newspaper, on TV and on the Internet," Sheila Weller, cousin of victim Ellen Hover, said before the NYPD decided to release the pictures last night.
"It is rare that someone kept trophies of the women he came into contact with."
Hover, 23, was found dead in Westchester County in 1978, and Alcala - who lived in New York City off and on in the 1970s - has long been a suspect.
Alcala, 66, is on Death Row in California for killing four women and a 12-year-old girl - but there may be other victims among the hundreds of pictures of unidentified women and children he took in the 1970s.
Police in Huntington Beach, Calif., posted 120 pictures on their Web site last month, and 21 women have been identified and found alive.
Here are some of the many photos the NYPD is now circulating. If you have any information about those in the photos, please forward the information to the NYPD at (800) 577-TIPS.
I'm rather surprised that it took this long to get the photos circulating in the general public in the hopes of cracking these cold cases.