Suspect arrested in Craigslist slaying

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

BOSTON -- A man was arrested Monday in the death last week of a woman who advertised massage services on Craigslist.org, Boston's police commissioner said.

Phil Markoff, 22, was arrested by Boston police after being stopped south of Boston on Interstate 95, Police Commissioner Ed Davis said at a news conference.

Davis said authorities had the Boston University student under surveillance "for days" before making the arrest.

Markoff is originally from upstate New York, but lives in Quincy, just south of Boston, police said.

Markoff is charged with killing Julissa Brisman, 26, who was found dead April 14 at the Boston Marriott Copley Place. The New York City woman advertised massage services on Craigslist and had a massage table set up in the room where she was shot Tuesday, police said.

Markoff is scheduled to be arraigned in Boston Municipal Court today.

Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley said Markoff is also charged with unlawful possession of a firearm. In addition, Conley said Markoff is charged with kidnapping and armed robbery in a separate case involving another woman he met on Craigslist.

Police said they had long suspected that Brisman's killer was connected to a robbery at the Westin Copley Hotel in Boston.

Authorities believe Brisman's death also may be connected to the attempted robbery Thursday in Warwick, R.I., of an exotic dancer by a man responding to an ad she had posted on Craigslist. She was held at gunpoint before her husband entered the room and her attacker fled.

The four photos released Monday by Warwick police show a man in a dark jacket with a baseball cap pulled low, obscuring much of his face. The surveillance photos of the man were similar to those released from the Boston Marriott Copley Place.

Boston police said they've also received more than 150 tips about Brisman's killing.

Conley said authorities believe Markoff may have had other victims.

"There may be other victims out there, and if you are, we want you to come forward," said Conley.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: