In 2015, a mundane thing happened that led to extraordinaire things. A woman in Charleston, West Virginia called 911 to report she had just shot a man. The woman had been arrested in the past for prostitution. The man she’d shot didn’t have a criminal record at all. According to her, she made a “date” with Neal Falls. When he showed up to her house, he took her hostage with a handgun he had brought with him. Falls attempted to strangle her. She pretended to pass out and grabbed a rake that was near her. Falls put the gun down to take the rake from her. She took that moment to grab his gun and shoot him.
During the search of Neal Falls vehicle which was at the scene, police found evidence that Falls had come there intending to kill the victim. In the days and weeks that followed, police found evidence that linked Falls to multiple murders across several states, including multiple women who have gone missing or been found murdered in Chillicothe, Ohio (there is a documentary about the Chillicothe Six).
As of 2019, Falls is considered a possible serial killer and remains the prime suspect in murders in Ohio, Nevada, Illinois, and Kentucky. His current suspected victim list is at 10 women, all of them women who were known to police to be prostitutes. Including the dismembered body of a woman found in Nevada during the time Falls lived there while working on Hoover Dam and a dismembered woman whose legs were found in the woods in Illinois (the rest of her body has not been recovered).
The first indication that something wasn’t right with Falls after he was shot and killed, was the police found multiple axes, saws, hatchets, trashbags, and clean socks and underwear in his car at location where he had been killed. The majority of Falls suspected victims didn’t just have a criminal record for prostitution, but advertised their services on the internet.
It was decided the woman who shot and killed Falls was acting in self defense and no charges were filed against her. Also, for a short time, Falls was considered a possible suspect in the Gilgo Beach Murders (Long Island Serial Killer). But evidence did turn up that at the time of the Gilgo Beach Murders, Falls was not living on the east coast and could not have committed them.