Possible serial killer case changing way detectives investigate cold cases

October 21, 2011 4:17:09 PM PDT
The capture of a possible serial killer is changing the way local investigators look at cold cases across the metro area.

Former security guard Steven Hobbs has been linked to two murders and multiple sexual assaults dating back to 2002.

There's no telling how long it will take cold case investigators to go through the mountain of unsolved cases. There is a local woman who is now making it her mission to help them in a different kind of way.

Hobbs may be behind bars but it isn't easy to investigate the murders of two women or the attacks on six if your prime suspect won't talk.

"Investigators briefly talked to him but we couldn't get any information from him," Harris County Sheriff's Office Lt. Rolf Nelson said.

What's more is that the cases involving mostly prostitutes may be the tip of the iceberg.

"Anytime prostitutes are being killed it comes up and it's a great, big issue," Kathryn Griffin said.

Griffin knows all about it. Eight years ago, she was a prostitute. Now, she's in the business of rescuing and rehabilitating them.

With Hobbs behind bars, the tone of her mission has changed and she's encouraging potential victims to come forward. She's already talking to several women.

"You'd be amazed how much information the different women that have been in the life or that some of those that are still in the life will have, and hopefully we can bring some closure to this," Griffin said.

Homicide investigators are now reviewing at least 20 unsolved murder cases from the past 15 years. The 2002 murder of Aritha Boyce could fit the mold. She was found strangled in the San Jacinto River near Highway 90.

Four months later investigators recovered Patricia Pyatt's body along the banks of that same river. The mother of five had also been strangled. Authorities say DNA connected Hobbs to Pyatt's murder.

Melody Baker knew Pyatt.

"I feel like she's going to finally find the peace she deserves and her family may be able to find the peace they deserve," Barker said.

Authorities believes Hobbs also is a suspect in a third murder, the murder of Wanda Trombley. He's being held without bond here at the Harris County Jail.

Load Comments