— The accused Craigslist killer, NBC News has learned, may have been soliciting men as well as women for sexual encounters through the online classified service.
NBC News’ Jeff Rossen reported Monday on TODAY that a Boston professional, who asked to remain anonymous out of fear that he could lose his job, reported contacting Philip Markoff via Craigslist.
“I posted an ad on Craigslist under ‘male for t,’ which stands for ‘males for transsexuals,’ ” the man said. “That’s where he found me.”
‘I was scared’
The man said Markoff replied to the ad by writing: “I am a 22 y/o grad student. 6'3, 205, good build, blond/blue eyes ... let me know what else you want to see or know about me.” The man said Markoff addressed him as “babe.” In one e-mail, the person the man identified as Markoff wrote: “What are you into and what are your stats? What are you doing tonight?”
Sources report that Markoff sent the e-mail from a Yahoo! address registered to “sexaddict5385.” He said that Markoff sent him pictures, many of them explicit, which is how he recognized Markoff when Boston police arrested the medical student on charges of murdering one woman and assaulting and robbing another in swank Boston hotels. Markoff also has reportedly been connected to an attempted robbery in a Warwick, R.I., hotel.
“I immediately went to the computer and typed his name in,” the man told Rossen. “It popped right up. I was scared like you wouldn't believe.”
Markoff was engaged to be married to a New Jersey woman, Megan McAllister, but The Boston Herald is reporting that their planned August nuptials have been canceled. McAllister, who said on a Web site that had been set up for the wedding that she met Markoff while both were volunteering at a hospital as undergraduates at the University at Albany-SUNY, has not commented since sending ABC’s “Good Morning America” an e-mail after Markoff’s arrest that said he “would not hurt a fly.” Markoff’s family has also supported him.
But, Rossen said,“Philip Markoff reportedly told his family this weekend, “There's more coming out ... Forget about me and move to California.”
Men targeted too?
The new revelations, Rossen reported, could change the direction of the police investigation into what other crimes Markoff may be accused of. Police had been asking women who may have been victimized by Markoff through Craigslist ads for massage or sexual services to come forward. They may begin investigating whether men were also targeted by the clean-cut Boston University medical student.
The unidentified Boston male told Rossen that he had first traded e-mails with the person he says is Markoff last spring. They corresponded again in January, but then the e-mails stopped and the two never met.
“You think this was about having fun, or may he have been luring you in for a robbery?” Rossen asked the man.
“Honestly, I don't even know,” he said. “I'm scared [by] just the fact I spoke with a killer.”
The man said he advertised in a Craigslist category called “casual encounters.” Markoff, he said, was looking to meet with “men who dress as women, with transsexuals — anyone who he can get ahold of online. This person was trolling Craigslist like a Monopoly game. I don't know who knows who else he contacted through there.”
“You think there are others out there?” Rossen asked.
“I do. Absolutely,” the man said. “I think there are other people out there who are afraid to come out — or don't know they communicated with him.”
The man told Rossen what others who have known Markoff have said: that he seemed appealing and attractive.
“He seemed like a great guy!” the man said. “He was very cute. I was really taken by his looks.”