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3 women assaulted or murdered in 1-mile radius

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Posted at 5:43 PM, May 31, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-31 17:43:39-04

With her granddaughter in the other room and in the dead of night Saturday, 71-year old-Patricia Artis woke up with a knife to her throat.

"At that moment, I knew in order to make it through the night I had to be cooperative as I possibly could because I was no longer safe. I was not safe and the utmost thing that I needed to do was to get myself and the baby out in one piece," Artis said.

She was forced to let the young man steal her cash, jewelry and ultimately her decency.

Even so, she wanted her story out there in the hopes of catching him because Artis' case now makes three women in May alone targeted, sexually and physically assaulted or even killed all within a one-mile stretch of Park Heights.

"We don't know with any degree of certainty that they are connected, but that is obviously something that we are looking at," said Baltimore Police Commissioner Kevin Davis.

The coincidence alone was enough to bring out Davis and the mayor to address the crime cluster. Connected or not, it may not take too long to figure it out as police have forensic evidence from both assaults on the older women and some still photos from a camera near the murder of Latrina Ashburne.

"There is some missing pieces here. We think those missing pieces are right here in the community and we're hoping that a knock on the door, perhaps this afternoon will give us that next piece that we need to go by," Davis said.

Police have canvassed the area. While they may have forensic evidence, they still need the community's help to put an end to whatever may be happening.

And shortly after the news conference Tuesday, there was no shortage of wanting to help from Artis' neighbor Zanett Stevenson.

"That is so sad like, I hope they catch that...excuse my French, the bastard because that was so evil and nasty what he did and I pray to God you catch him. I really pray, I can't even sleep at night."

Follow Brian Kuebler on Twitter @BrianfromABC2.