Virginia police say a man in police custody is responsible for the murders of at least four people in northern Virginia and may be linked to other murders.
Anthony Robinson, 35, of Washington, D.C., was arrested Nov. 23 and charged with two counts of first-degree murder after the bodies of two women were discovered in an open area in Harrisonburg, Va., located approximately 2, 5 hours from DC.
A third victim – who police say was initially identified by her family as Cheyenne Brown – was found near the Moon Inn in Fairfax County, closer to DC, along with another potential fourth victim, authorities say .
Police dubbed the suspect the “cart killer”, saying they believe Robinson used a cart to transport the bodies of the victims to the two locations.
“He meets his victims on dating sites, he meets his victims and then in motels… After inflicting trauma on his victims and killing them, he transports their bodies to a final resting place, literally in a shopping cart,” Fairfax County Police said. Chief Kevin Davis said at a news conference on Friday.
Officials said they were still working to identify some of the victims and were tracking others that Robinson potentially had contact with before he was arrested.
Maj. Edward O’Carroll of Fairfax’s Crimes, Cyber and Forensics Unit said he contacted DC police Dec. 7 to help locate Brown, who disappeared Sept. 30 after riding the subway from DC to Huntington, Virginia.
Police said they obtained a search warrant for cell data and determined that Brown and Robinson were at the same location in Huntington on the night of September 30.
On December 15, detectives found a shopping cart in the woods not far from the Moon Inn. Police said detectives looked inside a nearby container and found human remains believed to belong to Brown and another victim.
According to Harrisonburg police, Robinson was arrested in late November based on surveillance video and cellphone recordings, and is being held in a Rockingham County jail.
Davis said the phrase “serial killer” is one he has “used sparingly in my three decades in this profession.”
“Our cart killer does untold things with his victims,” Davis said. “It is our collective duty and responsibility to bring justice and closure to all of our communities.”
“He’s a predator,” Davis added. “We suspect he has more victims.”
The women killed in Harrisonburg, a town in the Shenandoah Valley, was identified as Allene Elizabeth Redmon, 54, and Tonita Smith, 39.
The Hill has contacted a lawyer for Robinson for comment.
“This department, the Harrisonburg Police Department and all of the agencies mentioned, are absolutely committed. Justice will prevail and the offender will be held accountable for what they have done,” O’Carroll said.
The Fairfax Police Department is working with the Harrisonburg Police Department and the DC Metropolitan Police Department as it continues its investigation.
Updated at 6:07 p.m.