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Serial killer suspect is wanted in Versace slaying

Andrew Phillip Cunanan
FBI 10 Most Wanted
July 15, 1997
Web posted at: 8:46 p.m. EDT (0046 GMT)

MIAMI BEACH, Florida (CNN) -- Police say suspected serial killer Andrew Cunanan, one of the FBI's 10 most-wanted fugitives, is the suspect in the slaying of fashion magnate Gianni Versace.

"He is the only suspect," Miami Beach Police Chief Richard Barreto said in an evening news conference.

Cunanan, described by Barreto as a "known male prostitute who services upscale clientele," is wanted in four killings across the country, from Minnesota to Chicago to New Jersey and now in Florida.

"Nobody's safe in this," said Paul Philip of the FBI's Miami office. "Don't think that because you're not gay that you're safe. Everybody's at risk."

vxtreme Miami Beach Police Dept. Press Conference

A key piece of evidence in the Versace killing is a red pickup truck missing from a New Jersey cemetery, where William Reese, a cemetery caretaker, was found murdered May 5. Police suspect Cunanan was the killer and drove off in the victim's truck.

That same vehicle turned up Tuesday near the scene of Versace's execution-style killing. Police found the red Chevrolet pickup truck in a parking garage. The truck's vehicle identification number matched the one from New Jersey.

Police were seen towing away the truck, which was sealed with evidence tags.

Police believed that clothes found under the truck are linked to the case.

The 27-year-old Cunanan is suspected in the slayings of four men from Minneapolis to New Jersey, and he was known to move in gay circles. Versace was gay.

Versace, 50, was returning home from the News Cafe on South Beach's Ocean Drive after buying an Italian newspaper when he was gunned down outside the gates of his Mediterranean-style mansion.

Police said the fashion designer was shot by white man in his mid-20s, dressed in a white or gray shirt and dark shorts and carrying a backpack.

"I do know it is not a random act of violence," Barreto said. "I believe that he was targeted."

Cunanan faces charges in the slaying of David Madson, a Minneapolis architect whose body was found May 3. Authorities believe that Cunanan fled Minnesota in Madson's Jeep Cherokee.

Several days later police found the Jeep abandoned on a street in an upscale Chicago neighborhood where developer Lee Miglin was found dead.

Miglin's Lexus then turned up at a cemetery parking lot in Pennsville, New Jersey, where Reese was killed.

Cunanan also is wanted for questioning in the April beating death of Jeffrey Trail of Bloomington, Minnesota.

A Miami television station quoted unnamed police sources as saying Versace was killed with a .40-caliber handgun, the same caliber weapon used in the other murders.

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