34-year-old Sanisha Johnson, of the Bronx, was shot and killed while working as a prostitute on Backpage in Burlington, Massachusetts. Charged in her murder are 24-year-old Epshod Jeune and 21-year-old Derrell Fisher, both of Roxbury, Mass.
The pair was allegedly robbing escorts in the area as one escort who was robbed was able to tip police off to Ms. Johnson’s alleged killers. If this sounds familiar it’s because it was the same racket Philip Markoff was running when he killed Julissa Brisman after using craigslist to find his victims. The Boston media is already making that comparison.
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is calling for Backpage to shut down its ads for prostitution. However, Backpage may already be on its way out since the major credit card companies stopped allowing their cards, pre-paid and otherwise, to be used on Backpage. Currently the only form of payment they’re accepting is Bitcoin which isn’t exactly the easiest form of payment to use.
Will the attention brought on Backpage by this murder be the final nail in their coffin? One can only hope that will be a positive that comes out of this senseless tragedy.
UPDATE 11/30/2017: Both suspects have been convicted of murder.