Police: Serial rape suspect tried to hang self

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) - Authorities in Connecticut say the man they believe is the East Coast rapist was hospitalized briefly after he tried to hang himself in his cell.

New Haven police Officer Joe Avery said Saturday night that Aaron Thomas survived his suicide attempt and is behind bars again following his release from the hospital.

Authorities say Thomas, an unemployed truck driver, is the East Coast rapist, suspected of terrorizing women with sexual assaults from Virginia to Rhode Island over 12 years.

New Haven police say DNA linked Thomas to the assaults.

He is charged in both Connecticut and Virginia.

Thomas could not be reached for comment; it was not clear whether he had legal representation.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.