Orange County News
Victim speaks out at Alcala sentencing
SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- The penalty phase in the trial of convicted serial killer Rodney Alcala began Tuesday in Orange County.
Family members of Alcala's victims testified in court Tuesday, where cameras were not allowed. Also in court, a woman who Alcala beat and sexually assaulted decades ago when she was 8 years old testified against the convicted killer.
"Over 27 stitches in the back of my head. He hit me right over the head in the back of the head," described Tali Shapiro as she recalled the severe injuries she suffered 42 years ago at the hands of Alcala.
Her testimony came as jurors decided how to punish the 66-year-old convicted serial killer.
Shapiro said she was 8 years old walking to school in Hollywood in 1968 when Alcala, then 25 years old, offered her a ride. She told him that she wasn't supposed to talk with strangers.
"He goes, 'Oh, I'm a friend of your parents,' and I went, "Oh, okay,'" Shapiro recalled. "I mean, I was 7 or 8 years old. I trusted adults."
Shapiro said that Alcala took her to his apartment where he said he wanted to show her a picture. Shapiro remembers walking up to his apartment with him, and that's when her memory ends.
A Good Samaritan who saw Alcala with a girl called police who broke down the door to find a little girl, Shapiro, lying in a pool of blood.
"Unconscious, naked with her legs spread apart, a bar across her neck," described prosecutor Gina Satriano in court.
Alcala was eventually convicted of child molestation. Seven years later in 1979, prosecutors say that he brutally raped 15-year-old Monique Hoyt. She was posing for photos when he knocked her unconscious.
"She'd been gagged with a T-shirt shoved down her mouth," said Satriano, who described past crimes in court to convince jurors that Alcala should pay with his life for torturing and murdering four women in Los Angeles County and 12-year-old Robin Samsoe from Huntington Beach in the 1970s.
Alcala has been twice before convicted and sentenced to death for kidnapping and murdering Samsoe.
Shapiro has been called to testify against him three times. Acting as his own attorney, Alcala did not question the now 50-year-old victim. However, he did apologize for what he called his "despicable behavior."
"He's never apologized before, and for him to even bother, I mean, that made me sick to my stomach," Shapiro said.
It took months before Shapiro was physically well enough to return to school. Even today, emotionally, she said she has a hard time trusting people.
Jurors must decide whether Alcala should be sentenced to death or whether he should spend the rest of his life in jail without the possibility of parole.
murder, legal, orange county news, eileen frere
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