Serial killer pleads guilty in 2 slayings

Dan Sewell
Associated Press

Cincinnati – A man who claims he has killed more than 90 women across the country pleaded guilty Friday to killing two women in Cincinnati in the 1980s.

Samuel Little appeared via Skype from the California state prison where he’s serving multiple life sentences. Hamilton County Judge Melba Marsh asked the 79-year-old man a series of questions about giving up his rights to trial that Little answered affirmatively, sometimes with, “Yes, ma’am.”

In this Nov. 26, 2018 file photo, Samuel Little, who often went by the name Samuel McDowell, leaves the Ector County Courthouse after attending a pre-trial hearing in Odessa, Texas.  Little is scheduled Friday, Aug. 23, 2019 to appear via Skype from California state prison, where he is serving multiple life sentences. Little is charged with the 1981 murder of 32-year-old Anna Stewart, last seen alive in Cincinnati.

Raising her voice when Little had trouble hearing her, Marsh then sentenced him to two consecutive terms of 15 years to life.

Little is possibly the most prolific serial killer in U.S. history, surpassing others such as John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy and Gary Ridgway, the Green River Killer.

Little was convicted in California of three slayings in 2013 and pleaded guilty to another killing last year in Texas.

Authorities have said they have confirmed at least 60 of the 93 slayings he says he committed in 14 states while he crisscrossed the country for decades.

Mark Piepmeier, a Hamilton County prosecutor, said Little told investigators that he didn’t kidnap or rape the women, and that he targeted women he didn’t think would be missed right away. Little said he got sexual gratification from strangling women, the prosecutor told the court.

“His bare hands on the bare necks, that’s what actually got him sexually aroused and that’s why he did this,” Piepmeier said. “It wasn’t for any other reason.”

Defense attorney Timothy McKenna of Cincinnati told the judge that at this stage in his life, Little wants to help police identify his victims and close cold cases. He also said Little is in failing health.

McKenna and Piepmeier flanked Little at a table in the California prison while Marsh conducted the hearing from Cincinnati, in the Hamilton County law library. Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien joined Hamilton County authorities in Cincinnati.

Little admitted to the 1981 murder of 32-year-old Anna Stewart, last seen alive in Cincinnati. Her body was dumped in Grove City, near Columbus. He also confessed to a second Cincinnati murder, of a woman who remains unidentified.