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S P E C I A L Cunanan Coverage

Cunanan: more questions than answers

Andrew Cunanan July 25, 1997
Web posted at: 11:30 a.m. EDT (1530 GMT)

MIAMI BEACH, Florida (CNN) -- The death of Andrew Cunanan leaves many questions unanswered, and authorities are looking for more evidence that the 27-year-old San Diego native was the person who killed five people, including fashion designer Gianni Versace.

Earlier this week, the suspect took his own life by putting a gun in his mouth and pulling the trigger in a Miami Beach houseboat.

Nine days after Versace's murder, after one of the most intense manhunts in the nation's history, authorities had Cunanan's body. What they lacked were answers.

  • Why did Cunanan begin a cross-country killing spree last April?

    Some victims were specifically targeted for revenge and others were opportunity killings. Police have said they do not know why Versace was killed. "I don't know that we are ever going to know the answers," Miami Beach Police Chief Richard Barreto said Thursday on CNN's "Larry King Live."

    A L S O :

    Larry King Live: Friends Of One Of Cunanan's Victims And Authorities Discuss What They Know Of Cunanan's Life

    Cunanan tip-off hero wants reward; police waver

  • Did Cunanan have AIDS?

    There have been reports that Cunanan -- described by his own mother as "high-class" male prostitute -- may have become angered by finding out he had AIDS. The medical examiner's office in Dade County, Florida plans to test the corpse for the AIDS virus. "That's the normal procedure," said investigation supervisor Gwen Shorter.

    According to KGTV in San Diego, Cunanan owed hundreds of dollars to the Palomar Medical Center, where he had gone in 1995 to be tested for sexually transmitted diseases. He tested negative for a number of diseases, but it wasn't clear whether he was tested for HIV, the station said.

  • Why did Cunanan kill himself?

    Investigators said he was simply trapped and experts on serial killers theorized he may have finished what he set out to do.

  • Did Cunanan leave a suicide note?

    Police said they did not find one.

    Cunanan and his father
  • Was the gun Cunanan used to kill himself the same one used in the other killings?

    Yes. The .40-caliber pistol was the same gun used in the ambush-killing of Versace and two of Cunanan's other alleged victims, law enforcement sources told CNN.

  • What was in the small safe found near Cunanan's body?

    Authorities have not revealed that information. But FBI agent Keith Evans said the safe "may contain more evidence related to the five homicides." Police took it away, along with an address book and financial records.

  • What was Cunanan's relationship with the houseboat owner?

    That's not clear. Fugitive German businessman Torsten Reineck was questioned by the FBI in Las Vegas, where Reineck owns a gay health spa. Authorities said he was being cooperative. Reineck is wanted in Germany on fraud charges but has not been charged with any crime in the United States relating to the Cunanan case.

  • Did he break into the houseboat or did he have a key?

    Police said they found no signs of forced entry to the houseboat and caretaker Fernando Carreira found one of the door's two locks unfastened.

  • Will the houseboat caretaker who tipped police get the reward money?

    That hasn't been decided. Police got a break Wednesday afternoon when Carreira dropped by to check on the home along the Intracoastal Waterway. Going inside, he saw slippers and a pillow, then heard a gunshot. Carreira ran off and got his son to call police.

    "I heard a boom and ran like hell. I thought the shot was for me," Carreira told CNN affiliate WSVN-TV in Miami on Thursday night. "I thought it was some bum; I didn't know who it was."

    He said he thought he deserved the $45,000 reward for information leading to Cunanan's arrest. Barreto, however, said the tip-off had never mentioned Cunanan and that he was not sure Carreira qualified. Various rewards were offered for "information leading to the apprehension of Cunanan."

  • Where was Cunanan hiding after the Versace killing?

    Residents in the area of the houseboat -- 2 1/2 miles north of Versace's home -- said they may have seen Cunanan roaming the neighborhood afterward. Carreira said he believed Cunanan had not been in the boathouse for more than three or four days before he was cornered. Carreira said he checked the dwelling on Saturday and found everything in order.

  • Did Cunanan contact anyone?

    William Esposito, deputy director of the FBI, said in Washington on Thursday that a nervous, agitated Cunanan contacted "an associate" within 48 hours of the Versace killing, trying to obtain a false passport so he could flee the United States.

  • Was Cunanan in any other trouble?

    Cunanan was thousands of dollars behind in credit card payments and was $46,000 in debt by May, KGTV reported.

  • Where will Cunanan be buried?

    Near his mother's home in National City, California, a family friend told The Union Tribune of San Diego. Mary Ann Cunanan was in seclusion.

  • What was Cunanan's relationship with Gianni Versace?

    Unclear, but the two are reported to have met socially.

    The red pickup truck
  • Why did it take several hours to positively identify the body as Cunanan?

    Even after the body was found, hours passed as investigators struggled to identify the body because the face was largely blown off. Fingerprints confirmed it was Cunanan.

  • How did the red pickup truck stolen from a New Jersey victim go unnoticed in a Miami Beach garage for weeks?

    "That's a good question," Esposito said.

Correspondents Brian Jenkins, Brian Cabell, Robert Vito and Reuters contributed to this report.

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