An extremely shocking case of a serial killer, luring innocent girls with a promise of marriage and then taking them to safe locations in other districts where he poisons them with cyanide and then takes away their jewellery, has been detected by a special team of ASP Puttur and CPI Bantwal. The serial killer by name Mohan Kumar @ Anand aged 46 years who hails from Kanyana of Bantwal Taluk has been nabbed and on interrogation has confessed to be committing these offences during the past 5 years and to have killed 18 young ladies belonging to Dakshina Kannada District and Kasargod in this manner.
The extremely tedious investigation into this sensational and shocking discovery started with the missing of one girl by name Anitha aged 22 yrs of Barimaru village of Bantwal Taluk on 17-06-2009. After the initial attempts by the local police to trace the missing girl, ASP Puttur formed a special team under CPI Bantwal to take up the investigation more seriously. The special team investigating the case began to track the mobile phone used by the missing girl Anitha. On careful study of her calls, a few calls were surprisingly traced to the phone number of another missing lady. On further study of the contacts of the other missing girl, there seemed to be connections to more and more missing girls of the district. Finally the team was able to locate a person who was actually using a mobile instrument that belonged to one particular missing girl. On making enquiries with that person as to where he obtained that instrument from, he confessed that one Mr Mohan Kumar of Derlakatte had given it to him some time back. The team immediately collected all details related to Mohan Kumar and traced him to his residence in Derlakatte. The special team on the morning of 21-10-2009 picked up Mohan Kumar from his residence in Deralakatte and interrogated him regarding the Mobile call details and about the missing girls. He immediately confessed to having committed a series of murders of young girls of Dakshina Kannada and Kasargod during the last 5 years for his sexual urges and gold jewellery worn by them.
Mohan Kumar who hails from Kanyana of Bantwal Taluk has had is education upto PUC in Uppinangady and then later joined Government service as a teacher in a primary school on a temporary basis in the year 1980. After being in and out of service and getting transferred to many places in the district for 23 years he finally quit his job in the year 2003 while serving as a teacher at a primary school at Angadi near Kanyana. He is married thrice and has divorced his first wife whom he had married in the year 1987 in Shiradi. He presently lives with his second and third wives at Uppala and Deralakatte respectively. The criminal antecedents of Mohan Kumar can be traced back to the year 2000 wherein he lured one girl by name Rathna to marry him and on refusal, tried to throw her off the Nethravathi bridge at Dharmasthala, when a group of onlookers nabbed him and handed him over to the police wherein a case of attempt to murder was booked and he was prosecuted in the case. The case finally was aquitted in the court of law for insufficient evidence.
Ever since then he has been in the habit of luring young girls wherever he found them from shopping places to bus stands, hospitals and other public places. The modus operandi of the offender is to first find a target and immediately approach her in a manner that she resembles someone whom he knows and then strike a conversation about her caste and family background. He finally enquires about her marriage status and if unmarried he offers to get married to her without dowry. A few cases have been rejected but those that have had a positive response from the lady will then be pursued for about a month by making repeated phone calls and meeting at public places. One fine day he tells the lady that they have to visit a temple to get a ritual done before the marriage and so they have to visit either, Bangalore, Mysore, Madikeri or Hassan. He then takes the lady to one of these places, houses her in a lodge and forces the girl into having sex. The next morning he takes the lady out of the lodge to a bus stand on the pretext of visiting a temple. Before leaving the lodge the girl is asked to take off her jewellery. At the bus stand he then tells the girl that since they have had unprotected sex she would need to take a medicine in the form of a powder to prevent pregnancy and asks her to take the medicine in the toilet of the bus stand. The innocent girls believe him and take the powder given by him in the toilet of the bus stand. The victims are actually given a powder of Cyanide by the offender. The girls after consuming the powder collapse after a few minutes, most often in the toilet itself and then the offender slowly escapes from the bus stand back to the lodge to pick up his belongings and the gold jewellery left behind by the victims. The entire scene at the bus stand looks more like a suicide by a depressed lady and so almost all these cases have been registered by the respective jurisdictional police under unnatural death cases. In this manner the offender has been luring one girl in every 3-4 months during the last five years and has confessed so far to having killed eighteen girls including Anitha of Barimaru. The offender was in the process of taking two more girls of Bantwal taluk during the next few weeks for the same purpose when he was nabbed. As he had never contacted the family members of the victims, he was never a suspect in any of the missing cases.
The following items have been seized from him by the police., 8 tablets of Cyanide and 4 mobile phones, jewellery belonging to the missing gfirl Anitha.
On the basis of his confession, a case of Rape and Murder has been taken up under Bantwal Rural PS Cr. No.111/09, U/s 302, 376, IPC and investigation taken up by ASP Puttur. The accused will be produced before the Court and police custody will be sought for further detailed questioning and investigation. We will be informing all the concerned districts regarding the offences committed in their jurisdiction and accordingly murder cases may be taken up there for investigation.
To briefly summarize the native places of these missing girls, four belong to Bantwal Taluk, two to Sullia, three to Puttur, one to Moodabidre, two to Belthangady, one to Mangalore, and five to Kasargod Kerala. The murders were committed at various places like ten at Mysore Bus stand, three at Madikeri Bus stand, two at Hassan Bus stand, two at Bangalore Bus stand, and one at Kollur temple in Udupi. As the offender is unable to recollect the exact dates or even the years of actually committing the offence and in some cases even the names of his victims, investigations are on to confirm all the details. This case is a rude awakening to young ladies falling into the trap of such offenders in the name of love and marriage and not keeping their dear ones informed about the issues.
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