SAN JACINTO COUNTY, Texas – A former Texas reserve peace officer, deemed the “ghost hunter,” has reached a plea deal in the sexual assault of two Houston women, but prosecutors said there were more victims.
David Lynn Turner, a serial rapist, was sentenced Thursday in San Jacinto County to serve 10 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Turner was unique in his targeting of victims and the story he used to lure them, investigators described.
Authorities said Turner met his victims on social media and dating websites by claiming he wanted to meet women who could communicate with the dead. He then duped the women by telling them they were going to a haunted house in Shepherd, Texas.
“He markets his ideas by saying, ‘We’re going to go ghost hunting,’ and he wants females who are like mediums with ghosts. So, the right answer, if you want to be with this guy, is to say you can communicate with a ghost,” Chief Deputy Tim Kean, with the San Jacinto Sheriff’s Department, said when Turner was initially arrested.
Investigators said once Turner had these women alone and in the dark at the supposed haunted house, he physically intimidated them.
“In fact, two of the victims said they would have done anything because at that point they were in survival mode, afraid for their very lives. They didn’t know what was going to happen next. One victim told us she didn’t want to end up in an ice cooler on the side of the road for us to find later,” said Deputy Tony Madison with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department.
Turner was arrested on May 4, 2021 and charged with two counts of sexual assault but, according to investigators, he harassed a Houston woman while out on bond.
The woman reported that Turner would reach out to her online and through text messages with extremely disturbing sexual messages.
“He propositioned her and sent her pictures of himself and various body parts that should remain private. He went as far as to show up at her apartment,” said San Jacinto Prosecutor Rob Freyer.
After hearing evidence, a judge revoked Turner’s bond and he was placed back in jail, where he remained until sentencing.
More victims have come forward but Freyer said to save them from having to testify, they agreed on the plea bargain. After the sentencing, one of the victims gave a tearful victim impact statement of how he violated her, and at that point, Turner turned his back so he wouldn’t have to look at her while she spoke on the stand.
Authorities said other possible cases spanned across the greater Southeast Texas region with potential victims in the areas of Beaumont, Galveston, Katy, The Woodlands, Coldspring and Livingston.