Investigators looking into Karina Vetrano’s murder did not find any reason to believe the jogger had been previously targeted or stalked by her assailant. However, her only sin was that she was a woman, and the man charged with her murder has a history of promoting violent behavior and hatred towards women. According to the authorities, 20-year-old Chanel Lewis was filled with rage when he jumped Karina Vetrano as she was jogging in a summer evening in Queens on August 2nd. He subdued her, raped her and then strangled the petite runner until she couldn’t find her attacker anymore, and left her lifeless body in towering weeds, not far from the trail from where he snatched her.
For the next six months, Chanel Lewis was nowhere to be found. In the meantime, investigators had little to work with. Even though the woman put up a serious fight and even managed to scratch her attacker, capturing his DNA under her fingernails, there was no match for a potential killer. Furthermore, the randomness of the attack further added to the difficulty of the case. For months, local law enforcement officers swept the area where Karina Vetrano was found for more clues, but nothing led them to the killer. Until one day, when a police officer grew suspicious of Chanel Lews’ behavior.
Surprisingly enough, the 20-year-old attacker cracked right away and told investigators everything. He provided the police officers with every detail of the brutal attack that came to his mind but was unable to offer an explanation for the murder. This is what led officers to believe the woman was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Chanel Lewis was arrested on Sunday, February 5th, outside his home in East New York, not far from his victim’s home.
According to the authorities, Chanel Lewis had his run-ins with the law, but nothing screamed out rapist or murderer. Furthermore, police officers said he had never been accused of anything major before and did not have a criminal record. However, on several occasions he did express his hatred for women, law enforcement officers added. Up to the killing of Karina Vetrano, the man did not act on his deep-seated aggression towards women, they added.
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