Police: New Haven man could be serial killer linked to seven murders

New Haven

New and disturbing details are emerging about a New Haven man who police say could be a serial killer, linked to as many as seven murders including in Connecticut. 

27-year-old Danueal Drayton was arrested at a Los Angeles hotel last week where police say he was found with a woman who had been tied up and sexually assaulted.  Police say he was going to kill her. 

Investigators with the New York Police Department say Drayton is also connected to the violent rape and murder of a young nurse, 29-year-old Samantha Stewart.  Police say he’s also accused of the sexual assault of a 23-year-old woman. Both crimes were just two weeks apart and right before police say Drayton left for California. 

“There are potentially more victims out there,” Det. Dermot Shea said.  “The common denominator in these two cases – one being a murder, one being a rape – is dating websites.  Two independent investigations, that as they progressed, led our detectives to the same individual. That individual was tracked across the country.” 

Those crimes also came weeks after a judge allowed Drayton to walk free with no bail in July.  He had been arrested in June and charged with choking his girlfriend.  Stewart’s father speaking to ABC, outraged by what he says is a failure of the system. 

“How could they release a monster? A monster like that to be roaming the streets is so dangerous.” 

Related: Violent past emerges about Danueal Drayton, suspected dating app killer from New Haven

We’re also learning new details about Danueal Drayton’s extensive history of violent crimes in Connecticut.  

Drayton was accused of strangulation in 2011 and convicted two years later.  He was sentenced to three years in jail.  

In 2013, Drayton was convicted of unlawful restraint, violating a protective order and violating probation.  He was sentenced to jail time, but part of his sentence was suspended.  

In 2015, Drayton was found guilty of unlawful restraint, interfering with an officer and violating a protective order.  He was sentenced to jail time. 

Most recently, Drayton was convicted of second degree harassment in March.  He was sentenced to jail time, but instead that sentence was suspended and instead, he was given one year of probation. 

Drayton lived with a foster family in Hamden years ago. The family declined to comment, just saying they are “heartbroken.”

 Drayton is being extradited to New York and is scheduled to appear in court on August 27. 

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