Juan Ignacio Blanco  


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Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Rape
Number of victims: 2
Date of murders: November 2001 / January 2002
Date of birth: 1961
Victims profile: Arlene Brumfield / Joanna Washington (prostitutes)
Method of murder: Strangulation / Suffocation
Location: Kings County, New York, USA
Status: Sentenced to life in prison on November 15, 2005

Supreme Court of the State of New York

decision & order

A guilty verdict for seriel killer murdered 2 prostitutes, assaulted 1

By Nancie L. Katz -

Thursday, October 13th 2005

A serial killer faces more than life without possibility of parole behind bars after a jury took only an hour to convict him of killing two prostitutes and attempting to rape a third.

Lee Van Glahn, 46, did not react to the quick verdict in Brooklyn Supreme Court after a gruesome two-week trial that highlighted the borough's seediest corners.

The jury, after deliberating one hour and 10 minutes, found Van Glahn guilty of first-degree murder in the sodomy and strangling of Arlene Brumfield in Crown Heights in 2001, second-degree murder in the suffocation death of Joanna Washington three months later and trying to rape a third prostitute, Angela Rogers, in February 2002.

Van Glahn could have faced capital punishment in Brumfield's murder before the Court of Appeals last year ruled the state's death penalty law unconstitutional.

Instead, Supreme Court Justice Plummer Lott could order Van Glahn to serve life behind bars for Brumfield's murder and then another 47 years to life in Washington's death and the assault on Rogers.

The sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 15.

"The families are thrilled and very relieved," said prosecutor Caryn Stepner. "They've lived with this case for four years."

Prosecutors charged Van Glahn, a white former tire worker with a ponytail, targeted slim, African-American prostitutes in their 30s and 40s with drug abuse issues, sexually assaulted them and killed them, leaving with a piece of clothing.

After being pulled off Rogers in February 2001, he allegedly asked cops: "Why are you defending these hookers? I'm a white guy. Do we have to go through all this for a crack whore?"

A DNA expert linked tissue found in Brumfield's teeth to Van Glahn.

Prosecutors claimed the victim bit Van Glahn when he forced himself upon her. He was convicted of using twine to strangle her in a Crown Heights playground on Nov. 29, 2001.

His blood also was found on her hand, experts testified.

On the witness stand, Rogers tearfully identified Van Glahn as her assailant in emotional testimony, and a fourth prostitute broke into sobs as she testified she saw him with Washington the night she was killed.

She testified that Van Glahn even tried to proposition her when she stopped to chat with Washington just hours before her partially clothed corpse was found.


DNA links suspect to rape-slay

October 7, 2005

A medical examiner yesterday linked tissue that prosecutors claim came from a bitten assailant to a suspected serial killer on trial for the murders of two prostitutes.

Lee Van Glahn, 46, faces up to life without the possibility of parole in the sodomy and strangling of Arlene Brumfield in Crown Heights in November 2001, the sexual assault and killing of prostitute Joanna Washington in January 2002 and the attempted rape of a third prostitute, Angela Rogers, in February 2002.

Prosecutors charge Van Glahn preyed on slim, black hookers in their 30s and 40s who used crack cocaine. They accuse the white, ponytailed, former tire worker of strangling Brumfield with twine in a Crown Heights playground on Nov. 29, 2001, after he forced himself on her and she bit him.

That injury was the focus of much testimony yesterday that seemed to spotlight a sordid side of Brooklyn.

First medical examiner Eric Bieschke testified that tissue found in Brumfield's mouth was "consistent" with Van Glahn's DNA.

Then, as defendant watched expressionless, urologist Christopher Dixon of NYU Medical Center detailed his examination of Van Glahn's private parts a year after the murders, saying he viewed a slight scar.

"Is that consistent with the defendant being bitten...?" asked prosecutor Cheryl Anania.

"It's a possibility," Dixon responded. "There's lots of possibilities."

Van Glahn's defense has called the scientific evidence inconclusive and say he is not guilty of any murders.

But in opening statements, prosecutors referred to his disrespect for his victims.

"Why are you defending these hookers?" a cop quoted him as saying after his arrest for allegedly assaulting Rogers. "I am a white guy. I don't even live in the neighborhood. Do we have to go through all this for a crack whore?"

Yesterday, a fourth prostitute tearfully testified to seeing Van Glahn with Brumfield the night she was murdered, saying he even tried to proposition her.



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