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There are some similarities with the cases. Obviously, the repeated stabbings are noteworthy. Additionally, the proximity of Detrot to Toledo is noteworthy as well.

I'm wondering if Watts ever did any of the posing, the annointing on the victim's forehead, the covering of the body with a cloth that Sr. Margaret's killer did to her. If there was that similarity then I'd see the connection.

Also, the early media reports in the 1980s did not mention sexual assault. But more recent media reports have suggested that she may have been sexually assaulted (abrasions and tearing to her genital area). I'm thinking that in the 1980s they may have not seen any bodily fluid so they assumed that there was not a sexual assault even though they saw the abrasions OR they may have seen the abrasions but did not disclose that to the public to attempt to protect Sister's dignity.

Also, there is something interesting that I'd forgotten in connection to the murder.

The days from Holy Thursday to Easter Sunday have a special schedule.

After the service on Good Friday the Blessed Sacrament is not publicly reserved. There are no services on Holy Saturday morning. This is the only morning of the entire year when

1. The Sacrament is not reserved and consequently others might be less likely to make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament Chapel.
2. There are no services until the evening Easter Vigil.

It Is therefore the only morning in the entire year when the murderer could have been certain that no one except the sacristan would have been in the chapel.

I don't know if I believe that Robinson did this, but I do think that it was someone who knew very intimately catholic ritual.


Per the one book about Watts, Evil Eyes by Corey Mitchell:

Watts was a regular church attendant but he went to a Pentecostal church.

Watts strangled and then stabbed many of his victims in the chest. He used various weapons - knife, screwdriver, chisel, icepick, mechanic's tools. He never seems to have brought anything with him, except a weapon, when he went prowling. When he did tie his victims, he used whatever was on hand -- wire hangers, their own clothing, their belts.

A few of the cases tied to Coral Watts that involved postmortem posing:
--Suzi Wolf - blouse open and breasts esposed
--Lena Bennett, clothing removed and body hanged from a wooden beam
--Glenda Richmond, blouse lifted to expose her abdomen
--Hazel Conniff, body tied to a chain-link fence with her belt, in a sitting position
--Ellen Tamm, top removed, body tied to a bush in the lotus position
--Elena Semander, clothing removed, body hog-tied
Watts didn't have any one strong pattern with what he did to the women after death. Some bodies were buried.


I see the similarities with exposing the genital areas, but from what you write the posings in the Watts cases are more violent. (As if any posing in a murder is not violent?) From what I've read in the Sr. Margaret murder, she almost looked like how the dead look in a casket with hands to each side. I remember that one of the nuns who found her testified that her body looked almost peaceful. (Again, as if a murder victim could look peaceful.)

Lyle Conniff

i am Hazel Conniff's brother. when i tried to bring attention to TX authorities that the same guy that they had could be the same guy from MI, my Marine Corps bosses got me shut up.

Laura James

Thanks for your note, Lyle. I'm so sorry about what happened to your sister.

The more I learn of Watts the more it seems that there is so much resistance when it comes to him. I can't figure out why.

Why is he so little known? Why did Texas police ignore him? Why did the Texas criminal justice system handle him so poorly? And why did your bosses push you to shut up? It's very puzzling to me.

Celeste Phillips

My aunt was murdered in 1973 in Cleveland ohio, they never found the man. I wonder if this evil thing did it. How can anyone ever find out?

Laura James

Celeste, I'd begin with his biography. I'd find out if the evidence is still in existence. Is there DNA?

Celeste Phillips

Laura do you have any idea where Watts was in 1973?? Please help. Thank you Celeste

Laura James

I'm not exactly sure where Watts was in 1973, but my best guess is that he was living part of that time in suburban Detroit and may have spent part of that time attending college in (Kentucky or Tennessee).

Is it possible that he may have murdered a woman in 1973? It would be his earliest known murder, but he first attacked a woman (non-fatally) in 1969.

Cleveland obviously is quite a ways to the east of his route along I-75 back and forth from home to school. On the other hand, Watts was known to cruise for hours at a time in a psychotic state searching for women to kill.

If you could tell me a bit more about what happened to your aunt (private email is fine).... where she was killed may be suggestive (freeway, her apartment?) But if I were you I'd first want to know if any physical evidence was preserved and when the last time it was that anyone took a hard look at it.

Lyle Conniff

there was a lot of public angst over serial killers in those years. from my viewpoint (as i was mostly trying to connect my sister's murder into a pattern) i watched as the killings continued in Detroit, then abruptly stopped. at this point they started up in Atlanta. when they stopped in Atlanta, they started up in TX. in hindsight, the Atlanta spree was likely not the same killer, as the victims did not fit Watts's preferred victim profile. i never did figure out why my USMC bosses reacted so swiftly to shut me up, but the Officer in question was only a Captain, pretty low on the food chain... though he did talk to the unit C.O. a LtCol. weather the Captain got orders from someone with more horsepower, i will likely never know.

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