Lawrence, Manhattan police continue ‘actively’ investigating serial rapist case; dozens of tips received since summer

Lawrence detectives and police officers search an area near Kansas Highway 10 bypass at 27th Street and Wakarusa Drive on Tuesday morning, Dec. 2, 2008. The search was related to a sexual assault reported Monday, December 1.

Lawrence and Manhattan authorities have received dozens of tips since this summer in the so-called college rapist case.

Both the Lawrence and the Riley County police departments continue to jointly investigate the case of a suspected serial rapist thought to have attacked 14 University of Kansas and Kansas State University students since 2000.

A press conference in late July brought new attention to the unsolved case.

At that time, police announced some previously unreleased information and promoted a new website with information and safety tips,

Since then, Lawrence and Riley County police have collectively received more than 40 tips, Lawrence Police Officer Drew Fennelly said.

Riley County Police Department Director Brad Schoen, left, holds a press conference with Interim Lawrence Police Chief Anthony Brixius, right, Thursday, July 27, 2017, in Manhattan.

Police have not announced any new attacks linked to the same suspect.

When asked whether, since this summer, police had received any rape or other sex crime reports suspected of being committed by the same man, Fennelly said, “Since the press conference, there hasn’t been any new evidence to indicate a recent assault is similar to the previously discussed incidents.”

In a pre-Thanksgiving break news release with residential and personal safety tips for the public, the agencies also reminded the public of the ongoing investigation.

“We are still actively investigating the Kansas College Rapist cases and will continue to follow up on any tips we receive,” the press release said. “We encourage anyone with information to contact law enforcement.”

Authorities have described the suspected rapist as “cold, calm, calculated.”

While none of the rapes or attempted rapes happened over Thanksgiving break, all but the first occurred during other breaks from university classes.

All happened off campus but in residential areas where many university students live.

The suspect typically entered the women’s homes in the early-morning hours while they were asleep, wore a mask and threatened them with a handgun. He is described as a white male between 5 feet 9 inches and 6 feet tall, probably at least 35 years old now, and heavy-set with a “prominent stomach.”

To contact police in Lawrence, call 785-832-7509 or Crime Stoppers at 785-843-TIPS (8477). In Manhattan, call police at 785-537-2112 or Crime Stoppers at 785-539-7777.

Attacks by suspected serial rapist

Lawrence and Riley County police provided the following list of all incidents linked to a suspected serial rapist thought to have attacked 14 women in Lawrence and Manhattan since 2000. Women were raped in all cases except the 2000 and 2015 incidents, which were attempted rapes, police said.

• Oct. 1, 2000 — 2200 block of College Avenue, Manhattan

• Aug. 11, 2001 — 2200 block of College Avenue, Manhattan

• March 29, 2002 — 2200 block of College Avenue, Manhattan

• Dec. 31, 2002 — 1400 block of Hartman Place, Manhattan

• May 30, 2003 — 1400 block of Watson Place, Manhattan

• June 14, 2004 — 1400 block of Watson Place, Manhattan

• July 14, 2004 — 3800 block of Clinton Parkway, Lawrence

• Dec. 29, 2004 — 2000 block of West Sixth Street, Lawrence

• Sept. 5, 2005 — 1400 block of Hillcrest Drive, Manhattan

• June 13, 2006 — 1900 block of Stewart Avenue, Lawrence

• Aug. 7, 2007 — 900 block of Moro Street, Manhattan

• March 22, 2008 — 3800 block of Clinton Parkway, Lawrence

• Dec. 1, 2008 — 2700 block of Grand Circle, Lawrence

• July 27, 2015 — 1400 block of Watson Place, Manhattan

More coverage

Read past Journal-World stories about the suspected college serial rapist investigation here.