Crime

The Disturbing Double Life Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

The Disturbing Story Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

Philip Markoff was in his second year of medical school when he was arrested for robbery and murder. He was nicknamed the "Craigslist Killer" because it was believed that he found his victims through their exotic ads on Craigslist.

Markoff was born on February 12, 1986, and he grew up in the small town (3,147 inhabitants) of Sherill, New York. His parents divorced when he was in primary school. He stayed with his mother, and the older brother went with his father to Syracuse.

As a child, those who remember Philip Markoff described him as a well-mannered and good disciple.

High School Days For Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

Throughout high school, Markoff's behavior was exemplary. He was intelligent, popular, and involved in student activities, including a youth court and a history club.

He was handsome looking and stood out from many boys his age. He was 6 ft 3 in and had broad shoulders and a rough frame. Most boys his size would go out for a football team, but Markoff was a strong competitor on the bowling team and loved to play golf.

Markoff took his education seriously and prepared for his future. He was an honorary student and a member of the National Honorary Society. His future looked bright. Who would have suspected that he would become the Craigslist killer?

Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer In Colledge

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

After high school, Markoff went to New York State University in Albany, where he showed an intense desire for excellence. He attended additional courses and graduated in biology in three years.

Socially, Markoff was reserved with friends and clumsy around women. He studied a lot and volunteered for the ambulance of the hospital there. The only thing he did for fun was playing all-night poker games with friends. He has earned a reputation as a good, serious player - sometimes too serious. He was not a good loser.

Megan McAllister

The Disturbing Story Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

Markoff met Megan McAllister at the hospital where he volunteered. McAllister, attractive and sophisticated, was two years older than Markoff. She invited him out, and he accepted. They continued to go out regularly and became college sweethearts.

After graduating, Markoff and McAllister moved to Boston, Massachusetts. Markoff was admitted to Boston University School of Medicine. McAllister was accepted to St. Louis Kitts in the Caribbean.

On May 17, 2008, Markoff proposed to McAllister, and she accepted. She put her medical dreams on hold and focused on plans for their wedding.

Little did she know that Markoff owed $130,000 and lived on loans. Even the $1,400 a month he paid in rent came from borrowed money.

Initial Investigation On Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

In April 2009, the police launched an investigation into two separate crimes. The surveillance footage linked both to the same man - the Craigslist killer.

On April 10, Trish Leffler was robbed with a gun at the Westin Hotel by a man who responded to an exotic ad she posted on Craigslist. Four days later, Julissa Brisman was found murdered at her hotel room door at Boston's luxurious Marriott Copley Place. She had an appointment with a man named "Andy" who contacted her through her ad on Craigslist. They corresponded by phone and email, and investigators had "Andy's" email address, which was a big break in their investigation.

The media jumped on the murder story, and the following day news of the "Craigslist killer" circulated across the country. Police issued a statement about the crimes and photos of hotel surveillance of a man the police wanted for questioning.

On April 16, Cynthia Melton was attacked at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel in Providence, Rhode Island. The Craigslist killer contacted her through her ad. From pictures taken on the hotel security camera, authorities knew that her attacker was the same man the Boston authorities were looking for.

On April 15, Markoff left Boston and headed to Foxwoods Casino in Ledyard, Connecticut. The place was familiar to him; he had been there 19 times in the previous three months. This time he stayed for two days and turned $700 into $5,300 in winnings.

Craigslist Killer Suspect

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

Investigators linked the Craigslist killer emails with the name "Andy" to "Philip Markoff." They had the address of an apartment building but could not find a driver's license for Markoff.

A Facebook search opened an engagement album that McAllister enthusiastically put together. They learned that Markoff was a medical student at Boston University. They received a copy of his student I.D. picture and compared it to the video pictures of the suspect.

Philip Markoff was officially a suspect of being the Craigslist killer. A 24-hour surveillance team was set up to escort Markoff to a supermarket, where they took items that he touched and sent them for fingerprint analysis. Better photographs of Markoff helped Melton and Leffler identify him as their attacker.

Arrest Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

The Disturbing Story Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

On April 20, Markoff and McAllister were in her car, heading to Foxwoods Casino. The police stopped them on I-95, and Markoff was handcuffed and told he had been arrested for Brisman's murder. McAllister insisted that the police were wrong and that her fiancé was not the Craigslist killer. She did, however, answer all their questions. Markoff argued the details of his Miranda rights and did not give direct answers.

Still convinced that the police had the wrong person, McAllister began contacting news outlets with what she believed to be true: Philip Markoff couldn't hurt a fly. She continued to think in Markoff until police uncovered evidence in their apartment.

The Search For Evidence

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

Some of the evidence from the apartment included a gun hidden in a medical book that had been dug out. Markoff bought it using a driver's license under the name of Andrew Miller. The same permit was found on him at the time of the arrest. Markoff's prints were also found on the purchase document. The bullets matched the ones used in Brisman's shooting.

Under the steam mattress, police found rolled-up socks stuffed with 16 pairs of panties, two stolen from Leffler and the other two from Melton. The owners of the others have not been identified. This confused the investigator. Were there more victims? Was Markoff so relaxed and sober when he robbed Leffler because it was not his first time? Investigators continued digging.

On April 21, Markoff was charged with Brisman's murder and armed burglary. He pleaded not guilty. Bail was denied, and he was sent to Nashua Street Jail.

Two days later, Markoff tried to kill himself by hanging with shoelaces. He was transferred to an infirmary and placed under suicide control. The same day, McAllister erased the couple's album from Facebook.

More Coming Out

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

Parents, sister-in-law, and estranged brother Jonathan visited Philip Markoff, the Craigslist killer in prison on April 24. Markoff and his brother talked for the first time in years. Dave Wedge of the Boston Herald reported that guards reportedly overheard the meeting and that Markoff told Jonathan, "Forget about me... there is more coming out."

The Craigslist killer was right. More has been revealed about his side that no one knew about, including his fiancée.

Jeff Rossen of NBC News reported that Markoff might have been looking for transvestites on Craigslist. The Craigslist killer had Yahoo! email address, "sexaddict5385." He used it in the spring of 2008 to correspond with an anonymous source, and it included erotic emails and explicit images of himself. Their last correspondence was in January 2009.

Investigators also found evidence that Markoff used Yahoo's "sexaddict5385" account to register on the BDSM website in the "Transvestism" category. He stated, among other things, that he was interested in wearing a collar and leash and changing clothes.

On April 29, McAllister and her mother visited Markoff in prison. Markoff was dressed in a "Ferguson protective blanket," a suicide prison gown given to inmates on suicide watch. McAllister spent 25 minutes with him and broke off the engagement. She told Markoff she would probably never see him again. The Craigslist killer had little to say, but "I'm sorry."

Legal Proceedings

The Craigslist Killer: They Searched The Internet For Love Or A Job, And They Found Their Killer!

On March 31, 2011, the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office released evidence of the Craigslist killer. Included were a pair of brown leather shoes he was wearing at the time of his arrest. Brisman's blood was found on the shoes.

The evidence contained a hollowed-out medical book where he hid a gun, shell casings, a knife, the victims' underwear, incriminating emails, and disposable telephones. Prosecutors said the evidence proved their case against Markoff beyond a reasonable doubt.

On the day of his arrest, an interview conducted by detectives was also published. It can be heard that Markoff denied any knowledge of the crimes. "I didn't tie up and rob anyone," Markoff said. "I don't really know what you're talking about." He then asked for a lawyer.

Dan Conley, Suffolk County District Attorney, said: "Obviously there was a dark and sinister side to Philip Markoff that he took to the grave."

Suicide Attempts And Death

The Disturbing Story Of Philip Markoff The Craigslist Killer

The day after his ex-fiance visited, Markoff tried to commit suicide again by cutting his wrist with a metal spoon. He did minor damage to himself. By June 2009, Markoff had moved from the infirmary to the general population. The Craigslist killer befriended some prisoners and set up poker games. Apparently, he was adjusting to his life in prison.

McAllister last visited Markoff to tell him she was going further with her plans to attend medical school in the Caribbean. Shortly after her visit, Markoff was caught with a stockpile of anxiety pills prescribed to him by a prison psychiatrist. He was returned to suicide watch for a few days but was re-released into general imprisonment.

Philip Markoff, 24, still awaiting trial, killed himself on August 15, 2010, on what should have been his first wedding anniversary. He spread out photos of McAllister on a cell table and wrote "Megan" with blood on the wall.

Markoff cut the main arteries in the ankles and legs and the carotid artery in the neck. He also swallowed toilet paper so they couldn't resuscitate him.