Lois Gibson's Composite Sketches Have Helped Catch Texas Criminals For 30 Years

Naim Rodriguez was a suspect in a Texas bank
There are ways to stop crime without using a badge and gun. Just ask Lois Gibson. She's been helping to catch criminals for 30 years with empathy and a palate of pastels.

Gibson is the world's most successful police sketch artist -- and she's got a citation from Guinness to prove it. Her composite drawings have helped police in Texas track down hundreds of murderers, rapists and kidnappers. But a deft hand doesn't guarantee success, it's her good ear and supportive tone of voice that gets victims and witnesses to open up.

"One hundred percent of all the witnesses say they can't remember well enough to do a sketch," Gibson, said. "It's getting them to remember the last thing they want to remember ... I'm sitting there with somebody who's been through the worst thing of their life."

If someone gets a good look at a criminal, Gibson believes she can coax a realistic description, even from the most reluctant witness, and translate it into a culprit-catching color drawing.

As a survivor of a violent crime herself, she can be the supportive stranger that helps someone after a trauma and that helps police collar suspects.

"She has an incredible talent," Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland, Jr. told The Huffington Post. McClelland was a detective when he met her about 25 years ago. "I have seen events where crime victims remember very little when talking to detectives, but after talking to Lois for three or four or five hours she can come up with a description that is very accurate."

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