- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 21, 2009

BOSTON (AP) - A Boston University medical student was arrested Monday in the shooting death in a hotel of a masseuse and the robbery of another woman who both advertised their services on Craigslist.

Phil Markoff, 22, was arrested during a traffic stop Monday afternoon on Interstate 95 in Walpole, south of Boston, Police Commissioner Ed Davis said at a news conference to announce the arrest. He is also suspected of being connected to an assault on a Las Vegas exotic dancer in Rhode Island last week.

“We are very, very happy to have this man off the street in such a timely way,” Davis said.

Markoff’s arrest came days after his image was shown on surveillance video at the hotels. Davis said that authorities had him under observation for days before making the arrest.

Authorities said Markoff was originally from upstate New York and now lives in Quincy, just south of Boston. A Facebook profile matching Markoff’s identity, including his photograph, lists him as a 2007 graduate of State University of New York-Albany and in the 2011 class at BU.

A Boston University spokeswoman told Boston radio station WBZ-AM Markoff had been suspended from the medical school after his arrest.

Markoff is charged with killing Julissa Brisman, 26, who was found dead Tuesday at the Boston Marriott Copley Place. The New York City woman advertised massage services on Craigslist and had a massage table set up in the room where she was shot Tuesday, police said.

Markoff is scheduled to be arraigned in Boston Municipal Court on Tuesday.

Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley said Markoff is also charged with unlawful possession of a firearm. In addition, Conley said Markoff is charged with kidnapping and armed robbery in a separate case involving another woman he met on Craigslist.

Police said they had long suspected that Brisman’s killer was connected to a robbery at the Westin Copley Hotel in Boston.

Authorities believe Brisman’s death also may be connected to the attempted robbery Thursday in Warwick, R.I., of an exotic dancer by a man responding to an ad she had posted on Craigslist. She was held at gunpoint before her husband entered the room and her attacker fled.

The four photos released Monday by Warwick police show a man in a dark jacket with a baseball cap pulled low, obscuring much of his face. The surveillance photos of the man were similar to those released from the Boston Marriott Copley Place.

Boston police said they’ve also received more than 150 tips about Brisman’s killing.

Conley said authorities believe Markoff may have had other victims.

“There may be other victims out there, and if you are, we want you to come forward,” said Conley.

(This version CORRECTS that Markoff is a suspect in RI assault, sted connected to assault.)

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