December 23, 2013 Cleveland Ohio (19Actionnews) — NA technology recently linked the rapes of five women on Cleveland’s East Side reported over nearly a decade from 1993 to 2002. But the identity of the perpetrator, who lured women into cars and brutalized them in empty lots and behind abandoned buildings, was a mystery.
With only a stack of police reports to go on, veteran Cleveland Sex Crimes detective Karl Lessmann started with making a map of the attacks, mainly reported in and around St. Clair Avenue near East 152nd street. He started looking for any little nugget of information that could lead him to the name of a suspect.
Victims had described the attacker as short, heavy, dark-skinned and smelly with grooved marks in his face. All of the women said the attacker was verbally abusive and first demanded oral sex. After the rapes he would toss them from the car naked or partially dressed.
GREEN, ROBERT(1).jpgView full sizeRobert GreenCuyahoga County Jail
One victim, who reported being raped in 1993, had mentioned she had seen the man at a certain address in East Cleveland.
Lessmann, who has worked sex crimes for 17 years, started searching for men who had lived at the address and fit the description. Finally, he got a hit. He got a state identification photo that could be used in a line-up as he tracked down victims who had reported their rapes decades ago.
That man was Robert Green, 68.
Lessmann said he felt strongly about Green as a suspect because Los Angeles police had arrested him in late 1960s and early 1970s twice for sex crimes and an attempted murder – crimes he was never prosecuted for.
Eventually, a woman raped in 2002 was able to pick Green out of a lineup. Two other women couldn’t positively identify him but didn’t exclude him, either. Lessman is still looking for the final two victims in hopes they will cooperate in prosecuting the man he believes attacked them.
Cleveland police seeking other victims of serial rapist
If anyone recognizes Robert Green as their attacker, call Cleveland Police Sex Crimes unit at 216-623-5718.
Lessmann arrested Green last week at his daughter’s home in Cleveland Heights.
Green told Lessman he was not a rapist and allowed his cheek to be swabbed for DNA.
A test at a state lab confirmed that Green’s DNA matched the profile found in each of the rape kits collected from all five victims in who reported rapes in 1993, two in 1995, 1996 and 2002.
The 68-year-old, who is frail and on oxygen, is being held in the Cuyahoga County Jail on a $150,000 bond.