Ever since the L.A. Weekly broke the story about the Grim Sleeper serial killer in August of 2008, the news about his ongoing killings, which began in 1985 on the streets of South Los Angeles, has gone global. We dubbed the male suspect the Grim Sleeper because he took a 13-year break before suddenly resuming his slayings.

In fact, a few days after the Weekly's first story was published, a Web site popped up dedicated to the murderous antics of the killer and providing readers with theories, a time line, maps, diagrams and even Google Earth images of some of the murder sites, all set off by the figure of a glow-eyed Dracula-esque figure wearing a cape and pointing a gun.

A few weeks back, we decided to contact the Webmaster. Was he or she a Los Angeles-based amateur sleuth? A modern day Sherlock Holmes? Or a news junkie with a taste for the macabre?

After a bit of back and forth cyber-prodding, it turns out that the

elusive webmaster is a Brit named “Richard,” who says in a recent email

that he's a 40-year-old from the Midlands — the area in the United Kingdom located between Southern England, Northern England, East Anglia

and Wales.

So why would a guy from “across the pond” care about an L.A. serial killer?

Richard writes that he started the Web site because of his

“fascination with true crime,” and his curiosity about the police

investigation and “the psychology and mindset of the people who carry

out such horrendous crimes.”

His “online armchair investigation” began when we first broke the story. “At the time I thought it should be documented

as each new lead or snippet of information emerged,” he wrote.

Richard predicts that publicity, such as the recent press conference about a mystery caller by Chief William F. Bratton, and the Weekly's exclusive profile of the Grim Sleeper's sole survivor

will be the key to solving the case. “The public are a powerful weapon

and I hope that the website will help by providing a place to read and

discuss the case as it happens.”

For good measure he adds: “Police are only human and they need all the help they can

get to crack this case and bring the person responsible to justice.”

Asked who he thought might fit the profile of the Grim Sleeper, Richard replied: “I have no idea, he's an enigma.”

contact the reporter at cpelisek@laweekly.com

LA Weekly