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November 5, 2002

Relatives beg killers to confess to police

From: Democrat and Chronicle, NY
Nov. 5, 2002

By Jeffrey Blackwell
Democrat and Chronicle

(November 5, 2002) — The mother and grandmother of a deaf Rochester woman found dead in Le Roy a week ago made an impassioned plea Monday for information about her death.

Kisha Sullivan’s mother, Francine Prather, and her grandmother, Francis Rudolph, asked that anyone who knows anything about the slaying call police. They also pleaded with the killer or killers to turn themselves over to police.

“To whoever did this, I don’t know what your reasons are,” Rudolph said. “But if you did this to hurt us, you already did that, and we wish you would just turn yourself in.”

Sullivan, 27, was found Oct. 27 in a wooded area near a quarry off Gulf Road in Le Roy, Genesee County. Her death is one of six unsolved homicides of women in the area in the past two years, according to the New York State Police.

Sullivan’s family attended a news conference organized by the Rev. Raymond Graves. He announced a $500 reward from United Church Ministries for information leading to the capture and prosecution of the person or persons responsible for her death.

“We now have another killer in the community who has killed a young lady who was a productive citizen,” Graves said. “We are appealing now for somebody to turn the killer in, and that the killer turn himself in to spare the community further pain.”

The Genesee County Sheriff’s Department is heading the investigation. Chief Deputy Jerome Brewster said investigators are interviewing people who knew Sullivan and tracking down leads they have received on an e-mail account set up for the case.

He said they are also in contact with regional law enforcement agencies to see whether there is any link between Sullivan’s murder and other unsolved homicides of women in the area.

The Greece Police Department is investigating the death of Maria Ortiz of Rochester, who was found Oct. 26 in a wooded area off Kirkwood Road.

No solid threads have been discovered to link the two slayings -- or the four other unsolved homicides -- but police agencies are swapping information to see whether any of the crimes can be tied together.

Also Monday, State Police released a forensic artist’s sketch of an unidentified woman whose skeletal remains were found in a wooded area in the town of Huron, Wayne County, on Aug. 29. Investigators hope the sketch will be a close enough likeness to help identify the woman and produce leads in the case.

State Police spokesman Trooper Mark O’Donnell said the woman was seven months pregnant and was Hispanic or mixed-race. He said she was between her late 20s and 40 years old.

O’Donnell said investigators are also exchanging information with other agencies. He said anyone with information about the unidentified woman should call the State Police in Wolcott at (315) 594-8071, in Auburn at (315) 255-2766 or the Violent Crime Investigation Team at (585) 398-4100.

“There are some similarities in these cases -- they were all women,” O’Donnell said. “But we do not have a common thread to link the deaths.”

Sullivan’s family is hoping someone will provide the nugget of information needed to solve their case. Francine Prather said she is willing to wait for the outcome.

“I want this person caught,” she said. “He should not be allowed to walk on this earth to hurt anybody else.”

Copyright 2002 Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.