25 years. Hundreds of victims. Justice for none. Lonnie Franklin Jr. was arrested in July 2010 after a 25-year killing spree in which it is thought he could have killed over 100 victims, potentially making him the most prolific serial killer in history. Significantly, his arrest was not the product of painstaking detective work but completely accidental, the result of a computer DNA match that linked him to a possible 20 victims. The murders all took place in the South Central area of Los Angeles, the poor part of the city with the worst schools, the terrible hospitals, and no jobs. The Lonnie Franklin case became political amidst accusations that the reason the killings were able to go on for so long was because the victims were all black African-American women. Like a detective story, this provocative documentary introduces the audience to Lonnie's world. His friends, who slowly reveal the extent of their knowledge, Jerry, Lonnie's night time companion when he picked up women, and Chris, Lonnie's son, who paints a complicated portrait of a contradictory man. Finally, director Nick Broomfield (Aileen: Life and Death of a Serial Killer) speaks to the survivors who narrowly escaped death at Lonnie's hands, but would never dream of sharing their experiences with the police. Tales of the Grim Sleeper is a story of cruel crimes, a police force that didn't care and a community estranged and abandoned from the rest of society.
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