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Rogers Park Killer Still Not Caught One Year After Death Of Eliyahu Moscowitz

CHICAGO (CBS) -- It had been one year as of Tuesday since Eli Moscowitz, one of two men murdered by a man now known as the Rogers Park killer, was shot and killed – and the search for the killer continues.It had been one year as of Tuesday since Eli Moscowitz, one of two men murdered by a man now known as the Rogers Park killer, was shot and killed – and the search for the killer continues.

At a news conference Tuesday, Area North Detective Division Cmdr. Robert Cesario said the investigation is still "active and ongoing."


Police Update On 2018 Rogers Park Murders

One year after two men were shot and killed on separate days by a man known as the Rogers Park Killer, the gunman remains on the loose. Chicago Police have an update.

Posted by CBS Chicago on Tuesday, October 1, 2019

However, Cesario said, "I'm saddened to report that we've exhausted all of our active national leads, and again are asking for public assistance."

The two men – Moscowitz and Doglass Watts – were killed in a period of about 36 hours a year ago.

First, Watts, 73, was shot and killed on the morning Sunday, Sept. 30, 2018, while walking his two dogs in the 1400 block of West Sherwin.

On the night of Monday, Oct. 1, 2018, Moscowitz was walking down the bike path on the 1100 block of West Lunt Avenue when someone shot him. Moscowitz worked at an Evanston Jewel grocery store.

Both victims had been shot in the head, and Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said in the days after the shooting that ballistics tests confirmed shell casings from both shootings came from the same gun.

The same .40-caliber gun was subsequently linked to two more shootings in other parts of the city. It showed up 15 days after the Rogers Park shootings in the 4300 block of West Fifth Avenue, where it was used to shoot two men who were stopped at a red light when a dark-colored SUV pulled up alongside them and someone inside opened fire.

Five months after that and about three miles away, the gun made its most recent appearance in the 2300 block of West Jackson Boulevard. The security guards at a residential building reported that a white vehicle drove up the driveway, then backed out and someone started firing shots. Fortunately, no one was hit.

Cesario said Tuesday that even though the gun found its way to other crime scenes, there was no indication that the Rogers Park killer was connected to the other incidents.

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One of the biggest leads in the case has been surveillance video.

Rogers Park Gunman
Chicago police say this man is a suspect in the fatal shooting of 73-year-old Douglass Watts on Sept. 30, 2018. Ballistics tests have linked the shooting to another homicide one day later, the slaying of 24-year-old Eliyahu Moscowitz. (Credit: Chicago Police)

It shows a masked man with a strange walk, who was spotted near the crime scene.

Douglass Watts and Eliyahu Moscowitz
Douglass Watts (left) and Eliyahu Moscowitz (right) were shot and killed blocks apart in a span of about 36 hours, and police have determined both men were killed with the same gun. (Photos supplied to CBS)

Police on Tuesday reissued the community alert about the murders and the accompanying surveillance images and video.

"We know that there is someone out there who has that seemingly innocuous information that will help detectives with the kick-start they need – whether it's a family member, a friend, a trusted loved one," Cesario said.

He said no motive for the shootings has been established. He declined to speculate upon whether the suspect had left the city or otherwise disappeared from sight.

Cesario said hundreds of tips about the case came in in the days, weeks, and even months after the murders, but they have since begun to try up.

He asked that whoever has that information do the right thing and call police. A $150,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Anyone with information is asked to call Area North detectives at (312) 744-8261.

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