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Mother speaks out about murder suspect's arrest

December 6, 2012 3:19:58 PM PST
It has been 19 years since her daughter was murdered, but the victim's mother told Eyewitness News she never lost the hope that the killer would someday be found.

Police say 60-year-old Lucius Crawford has confessed to killing the woman's daughter and two other women in the area.

The victims were found in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, in Yonkers, and the latest this week in Mount Vernon.

"One part of me wanted to go and strangle the man, the other part of me was saying pray for the man, I just didn't know what to do," said Arlene Perkins, victim's mother.

She is a mother who has suffered for 19 long years, wondering if the person who murdered her daughter would ever be caught.

It was September 1993 when Laronda Shealy was found stabbed to death in a Yonkers building.

The case went cold until Tuesday when police arrested 60-year-old Lucius Crawford.

"A few people would make statements like 'The police department probably isn't looking', I didn't believe any of that, I just kept the faith," Perkins said.

The 60-year-old suspect has confessed to killing Shealy and another Yonkers woman whose body was found just over the Bronx border a month later.

A possible DNA match led Yonkers and NYPD detectives to question Crawford, but almost unbelievably, when they arrived at his apartment in Mount Vernon they discovered the body of another woman who had just been stabbed to death.

Crawford was picked up a short time later.

"I don't understand how somebody can do those things, and live with it, it has to be a very sick individual," Perkins said.

Perkins says she vaguely recognizes the suspect from the area, but never knew him.

Crawford has spent nearly half of his life in prison for other assaults against women who survived his brutal attacks.

Laronda Shealy did not. So there is relief an arrest has been made.

"An individual like that does not need to be on the street, because it will be somebody else's daughter, somebody else's sister, somebody else's mom, and I don't think any family should have to go through this," Perkins said.

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