Authorities have found the bodies of seven women throughout Hammond and Gary, Ind., that have been linked to a possible serial killer currently in police custody, Fox News reports.
According to the report, 43-year-old Gary resident Darren Deon Vann gave police information about three other dead women after he was picked up for questioning in the strangulation death of 19-year-old Afrika Hardy on Friday in a Hammond Motel 6.
Fox News reported that Vann is a convicted sex offender for crimes committed in Texas. Hammond Mayor Thomas McDermott Jr. blasted the individual as a "serial killer" who "admitted to a couple of homicides in Hammond" from the mid-1990s.
"The suspect Hammond arrested for the Motel 6 murder is an admitted serial killer," McDermott wrote on a Facebook post Sunday about the discoveries, Fox notes. "The suspect gave up the location of a body in Gary that was confirmed found where he said it would be."
Vann reportedly confessed to killing Hardy and told the authorities where to find three more dead bodies in Gary. Police uncovered the body of Anith Jones at 11:20 p.m. Saturday; the 35-year-old had been reported missing since Oct. 8.
Between 1 and 2 a.m. Sunday, police recovered two more bodies, and three additional unidentified remains were discovered later that day, also in Gary—making the total seven.
All seven deaths were ruled homicides, according to Fox News, which quoted the coroner's office. Most of the bodies were hidden in abandoned or fire-damaged homes.
According to the coroner's office, both Hardy and Jones died of strangulation.
As the community grapples with the sudden, grisly discoveries, the authorities are trying to instill a sense of calm and security.
"We would like to dispel the rumor that there is a serial killer on the loose," Gary Police Cpl. Gabrielle King said in a statement. "There is a 43-year-old man in the custody of the Hammond Police Department, who led officials to three deceased female victims, who has claimed responsibility for their demise. Gary Police are closely working with Hammond Police to assist in covering every area of the investigation needed to pursue charges as expeditiously as possible."
Read more at Fox News.