A convicted California serial killer who said he committed as many as 90 murders may be linked with a 40-year old murder case in South Carolina.
Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott announced Wednesday that his department is looking into a possible connection between Samuel Little and the 1978 murder of 19-year-old Evelyn Weston.
“The investigation really hit dead ends,” Lott said, who had been an investigator with the department for about one year when Weston’s body was found. “Those things you don’t forget. My notes are still in the file.”
Lott said Little has been talking to an investigator with the Texas Rangers who requested the department’s case file.
“When they pulled our file and started looking in the file and there’s my name with my notes, my investigative notes, and then they come and said ‘Do you remember this case?’ and I said, ‘Yeah.'”
Lott said Little has provided information to the Texas Rangers investigator that only Weston’s killer would know.
“Some of the things he’s told us does match and only the killer would know that,” he said. “The time period, the location, certain things we recovered at the crime scene. Certain things matched.”
Lott said investigators are now re-examining the DNA evidence to see if that can connect Little to the crime. Lott said DNA was used to convict Little in three California killings.
“We kept these files. We’ve kept this evidence and now all these years later we can go back and match stuff up,” Lott said.
According to information provided by the sheriff’s department: “Weston was found dead from a gunshot wound to the head along a dirt road near what is today the intersection of Spears Creek Church Road and Percival Road. Little’s description of the woman he killed while in South Carolina matches Weston. He also can’t recall exactly what year he was in South Carolina, though investigators place him somewhere in the South at the time of Ms. Weston’s killing. . .Weston was last seen at what was formerly the Steak and Ale in the 5100 block of Forest Drive. Her driver’s license was found in a friend’s vehicle, which she had borrowed for the night and left parked at the restaurant; investigators believe she met her killer and left the restaurant with him in his car. During the course of the investigation, a woman who lived near where Weston’s body was found said she heard screams and two shots around 9:30 p.m., the night before Weston was found.”
Lott said when a serial killer has been convicted, law enforcement agencies go back to cold cases to see if there are any connections.
“You look at all your unsolved cases,” he said. “So we’ll look at everything that we got but when we got the information from them (the Texas Rangers) and we started looking at our unsolved cases, things started falling into place and to a certain degree, it matched this one. We’ll do that on other cases.”
“He had a certain pattern that he used,” Lott said. “Certain type women that he would kill and she fits that profile.”
Lott said the department is trying to find Weston’s family.
As to pursuing charges against Little, “He’s already serving a life sentence,” Lott said.
“If everything that he says proves to be true, he’s probably going to be the number one serial killer that the United States has ever seen,” he said.