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Police Arrest Two Men Linked To Murder Of Four Women, Say May Be More Victims

Franc Cano, 27 (l) and Steven Dean Gordon, 45 (r)

Franc Cano, 27 (l) and Steven Dean Gordon, 45 (r)  (National Sex Offender Public Website (NSOPW) )

Police in California have arrested two registered sex offenders suspected of involvement in the murder of four women across Orange County, including one whose body turned up at an Anaheim recycling plant and three who disappeared in Santa Ana.

Franc Cano, 27, and Steven Dean Gordon, 45, were arrested about an hour apart near their RVs on Friday, Anaheim police Lt. Bob Dunn said.

“We believe we have two serial killers in custody and we have stopped them in their tracks,” he said.

He said detectives in Santa Ana and Anaheim launched a joint investigation after the naked body of Jarrae Nykkole Estepp, 21, was found in the conveyor belt of the recycling plant last month.

The probe led detectives to connect the men to her slaying, and the disappearance of three women who frequented a Santa Ana neighborhood known for drug dealing and prostitution.

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The men were booked on suspicion of killing four women, including 21-year-old Jarrae Nykkole Estepp, a Modesto resident whose unclothed body was found March 14 on a conveyor belt at a recycling plant in Anaheim.

The Orange County Register said that while investigating the Estepp case, police gathered information about the disappearance of three other women – Kianna Rae Jackson, 20; Martha Anaya, 28; and Josephine Monique Vargas, 34.

The Los Angeles Times says outreach workers with an Oklahoma nonprofit had frequent contact with Estepp in Oklahoma City in 2012, when she was featured in several videos of street life posted on YouTube and elsewhere.

Though no other suspects were thought to be involved, Dunn said detectives were continuing to look for more potential victims across the country.

The Orange County Register reports both men were convicted of lewd and lascivious acts on children under 14 years old. 

As a requirement of their conviction, both were required to wear GPS tracking bracelets, though officials wouldn’t say whether the tracking devices played a role in linking Gordon and Cano to the women.

No further details were released pending a news conference planned for Monday.

Based on reporting by The Associated Press.

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