The Detroit News, Elizabeth Conley, Associated Press
In a Dec. 26, 2011 photo, Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee, center, addresses the media, with investigator Charles Wilson, left, and Asst. Police Chief Duane Blackmon about the similarities of the women found in the trunk of cars in Detroit this month, at Police Headquarters in Detroit, Mich. Three of four women recently found dead in Detroit car trunks had promoted themselves as escorts through the same website, police said Monday. The deaths could be connected, said Chief Ralph Godbee, who cautioned that police were "stopping short" of calling it the work of a serial killer.

DETROIT — Detroit police fear that a killer may be targeting escorts after finding that three of four women found dead in car trunks over the past week had placed sex-related ads on the same website.

Police Chief Ralph Godbee says authorities find the link "disconcerting."

At least 45 attorneys general raised concerns earlier this year about how the site, Backpage.com, polices ads for adult services.

Email and phone messages seeking comment were left for a Backpage.com lawyer Tuesday.

The latest victims were found Christmas morning, when Detroit firefighters discovered two badly burned bodies in the trunk of a car that had been set ablaze in a garage.

A joint funeral is planned for Thursday for the other two women, found dead Dec. 19. Police were withholding the names of latest victims.