Exclusive: Reward Money Gone for Fairmount Park Rapist Case

Investigators still believe suspect is lurking in the Philadelphia area, asking for help

By Vince Lattanzio
|  Friday, Jul 23, 2010  |  Updated 10:15 PM EDT
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As reward money is returned to its donors for the lack of an arrest, police are still searching for one of Philadelphia's most violent criminals.

NBC Philadelphia - Deanna Durante

As reward money is returned to its donors for the lack of an arrest, police are still searching for one of Philadelphia's most violent criminals.

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The incentive for turning over information about one of the most sought after criminals in Philadelphia is gone.

In an exclusive interview with NBC Philadelphia's Deanna Durante, Philadelphia Police Lt. Tom McDevitt says reward money leading to the arrest of the Fairmount Park rapist is gone.

It's been seven years since his first attack and almost three years since his last in and around Fairmount and Pennypack parks. During his reign of terror, the unidentified man attacked four women -- killing student Rebecca Park, stabbing another woman and brutally beating two others.

"Every night before they go to sleep, they see this guy's face," Lt. McDevitt said.

Investigators have the man's DNA, sketches of his face -- they know what he wears, how he uses a bike to get around and they believe he's still lurking in our area.

"We know somebody in Philadelphia knows who this person is. He's probably your neighbor, he could be a cousin, a husband, a brother. Somebody knows who he is," Lt. McDevitt said.

Around $30,000 was up for grabs when the rapist first attacked, but as time went on with no new leads, the money was returned to its donors.

"You can't expect someone to put a reward up for somebody and just leave it in there eternally," says John Apeldorn of the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley.

While the lack of reward money worries investigators, they hope someone will come forward and stop the man before he strikes again.

"I personally don't think he ever left," Lt. McDevitt said. "A person like him you just never know what's gonna happen. The next victim could be dead."

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call 215.546.TIPS. Those wishing to make a new donation for a reward in the case should contact the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley at 215.546.6532.

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