Boston Police Have Craigslist Murder Suspect, Philip Markoff, in Custody


Good Morning America report following JuLissa Brisman’s murder.


The Boston Globe states that the suspect is a Boston University med student named Philip Markoff, age 22. Thanks to the commenter who provided this Facebook link for Markoff:

Markoff was engaged and he and his fiancee had a website together:

Phil Markoff and his fiancee met in undergrad at the University of Albany in New York. According to their site, she was a senior at the time and Markoff was a sophomore. The couple volunteered together at a nearby medical center, doing scut work in the Emergency Room. Their first date was on November 11, 2005. They were engaged in May, 2008 and were set to be married on August 14 this year on the beach next to McLoone’s Pier House in Long Branch, NJ.


Screen-capture of Click to enlarge.

People who go on crime sprees often experience a specific stressor – some event that ‘sets them off.’ It isn’t that they snap – it’s more that something coalesces inside the spree criminal. Could stresses related to a relationship or impending nuptials have set off the so-called “Craigslist killer?” That’s just one of many questions people will probably ask about the accused, Phil Markoff. You’d think after much more prolific and evil criminals like Andrew Cunanan and before him, Ted Bundy, that people would learn that violent criminals come in all sorts of packages. Even in the guise of a beefy, blond med student with a GQ smile.

NOTE, ADDED LATER: Excellent article about Markoff in the Boston Herald by Laurel J. Sweet, Edward Mason and Jessica Van Sack. The Herald crew reports, among other things, that the “nice, clean-cut” Markoff has also been suspended from Boston U. ALSO OF INTEREST: the estimable Sarah Weinman sent along this link to Markoff’s class schedule at BU. Sarah also sent me a link to this page, which explains how Markoff and his fellow students were being graded. She posed an excellent question in her email regarding Markoff and his exams: “Markoff took this exam on March 20. How did he do? And if he failed, could this have been enough of a stressor to trigger his crimes?”

Original Post

Boston Police say they have a suspect in custody in connection with three robberies and one homicide committed following hook-ups via Craigslist. The murdered victim, New York model JuLissa Brisman, may have worked as an escort in the past. She was shot to death inside Boston’s Marriott Copley Place Hotel. They have not released his name, but will hold a press conference later tonight. This post will be updated and revised as further information becomes available.