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Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Hunter and the Unidentified Caller

The Route 8 killer obviously liked the location where he had chosen to dump Karen Everett. Less than two months later, on January 20, 1989, the body of Mildred Alvarado, also a prostitute and heroin addict from Waterbury, was found in almost the exact same spot three quarters of the way down the embankment off Valley Road.

A dispatcher from State Police Troop L in Litchfield got the call on the evening of January 19th. The anonymous male caller said that he had been "down on Valley Road and saw a body." Then he hung up. Red flag. Who was that man? Why didn't he identify himself? Most importantly, if the caller was also the killer, did he want to tease the cops? Was this some kind of sick game?

Tom Pollack contacted me a few days following our interview at the McDonalds in Torrington. He had another recollection that he forgot to share with me. When Mrs. Brown called Tom and Lloyd to the site of Karen Everett's body off Valley Road in October, a police car simultaneously arrived. Evidently, a hunter had just phoned the state police to inform that a body was lying on the embankment. On further recollection, Tom can now say for sure that Everett's discovery happened on a Sunday afternoon. This is a significant detail since it's illegal to hunt on Sundays in Litchfield County. Moreover, that someone was hunting near that embankment seemed far-fetched, to Tom. It's a 50-foot incline beside an active roadway. Not a great place to shoot deer.

When the hunter phoned the police about Everett in October, did the police get his name? If not, then there's a chance that the unidentified "hunter" was, in fact, the killer, and this was all part of a power drama that he played with the authorities, placing himself in the position of the god-like puppeteer. Serial killers are a  narcissistic lot. Certain types take great pleasure in mentally toying with the police.

Back to the subsequent discovery of Mildred Alvarado in January 1989. Unlike Everett, Alvarado had not been sexually assaulted. She remained fully dressed in dungarees, a t-shirt with a Playboy logo, and a denim vest. Only her shoes were missing. With this difference in mind, there is the remote chance that Alvarado was not murdered by Everett's murderer. However, the similarities between Everett's and Alvarado's deaths are also striking. In addition to being placed in the same location as Everett, Alvarado had also been strangled. That Alvarado was dressed and not sexually violated may only indicate that the killer did not have the time to further his plan. Perhaps, in Everett's case, he had sexually assaulted the victim posthumously and circumstances with Alvarado, for example, the sound of a car approaching in the distance, did not permit a rape to proceed.

More speculation: if the hunter who phoned police about Everett in October, and the unidentified caller who phoned in Alvarado's sighting in January was, in fact, the killer of both women, it follows that he may also have been a local resident. Granted, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know to phone the police of a specific jurisdiction regarding a body sighting in that jurisdiction, regardless of where you lay your own head at night. That said, in the days when only paper phone books gave access to police numbers and the internet was an invention to come, perhaps the killer returned home to a nearby location, flipped open the Litchfield County phone book, and made the anonymous call.

According to serial killer scholar, retired police officer, and Winsted, Connecticut native Bob Peetz, serial killers known as "marauders" will grab and kill their victims in the area where they themselves live and dump the bodies at a remote local. Others, known as "commuters", travel to get their victims. The person who murdered Everett and Alvarado was probably either a marauder or a commuter; to wit, he either lived in Waterbury, or Harwinton. My loosey-goose phone book theory supports the idea of the killer as a commuter. Perhaps he worked in Waterbury and traveled back to his home in Harwinton each night. If so, the risk of his being sited near Valley Road would not be such an unusual occurrence as he lived nearby.

There's also a good possibility that the unidentified individual who phoned police about Mildred Alvarado, and/or the hunter who phoned in the Everett sighting, had absolutely nothing to do with the crimes. Maybe each man wanted to help, but just didn't want to get involved and risk turning into a suspect.

Killers who strangle are usually classified as "lust murderers." According to Peetz, strangulation is the most personal kind of death. The killer has to not only invade the victim's personal space, but grab them, hold them, and kill them. Additionally, lust murderers are known for a habit of returning to the dumping ground and tampering with the bodies, including having sex with the corpse. It's not outside the realm of possibility that Karen Everett was not sexually violated at the time of her death, but on the following day. Thus, the killer could have intended to return to Mildred Alvarado's corpse in the near future to commit the act of necrophilia and the anonymous caller put a stop to that. This is a dark supposition, on my part. Then again, true crime is not for the faint of heart.


  1. Love your review. Interesting about the two callers, makes you wonder. Would love to read a book about this. June Julie Dechman

  2. Thanks, June. The book is on the horizon. 2016 publication.

  3. Makes me wonder if one of them is involved

  4. Do you think the person who killed these 2 women, will ever be caught?

  5. I would like to see the bodies of Karen Everett and Mildred Alvarado exhumed for further DNA analysis. Our forensics have greatly improved since the late 1980s, and bodies in the ground are basically in cold storage. These bodies were relatively fresh, and so they may still hold important evidence about the killer.

  6. How about we leave the bodies where they are and let them rest in peace. It's hard enough as a family member to live with this but for someone to want to exhume the body of our loved one is revolting to me. Did you consult the families of the victims in which you are writing about and sharing pictures of?

    1. But if exhuming them may catch a killer it could save lives. Lives should be saved. He has killed again. They don't stop.

  7. The photos that I have shared are public record (mug shots). The personal photo of Mildred Alvarado was sent to me by a grieving family member who wanted Mildred to be remembered as the beautiful soul that she was to her children, who are now adults.