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John Getreu receives life sentence for 1974 murder

Family, friends of Janet Ann Taylor, other victims find relief after 47 years

John Getreu waits in a courtroom at the Santa Clara County Superior Court Hall of Justice during a hearing on July 15, 2019. Embarcadero Media file photo by Veronica Weber.

Calling the string of strangulation murders and sexual assaults by John Arthur Getreu "evil and despicable crimes," San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Robert Foiles sentenced the 77-year-old man to life in prison and a $5,000 fine on Friday for killing Janet Ann Taylor 47 years ago.

a Honda resident Janet Ann Taylor was last seen hitchhiking near Stanford University on March 24, 1974. Her body was found in a roadside ditch in Woodside the next day. She had been strangled. Courtesy San Mateo County Sheriff's Office.

"Words cannot begin to express my sorrow in this case," Foiles said.

He wished that Taylor's parents were alive to see the man who killed their daughter be brought to justice and hoped all of the families and the surviving victims would get some solace from knowing that Getreu would spend the remainder of his life in prison.

A jury convicted Hayward resident Getreu of first-degree murder and infliction of great bodily injury on Sept. 14 after a scant hour of deliberation. His trial lasted 18 days. He murdered Taylor, 21, on March 24, 1974, while she was hitchhiking home after visiting a friend. Her body was found in a ditch on Sand Hill Road near Manzanita Way. The La Honda woman had been strangled, beaten and sexually assaulted.

Witnesses, including his family, a former wife, the family of another murder victim and another victim who survived an assault by Getreu provided testimony during his trial.

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Getreu was previously convicted and imprisoned in Germany when he was 18 years old for the 1963 strangulation, beating and rape of 15-year-old Margaret Williams. Her father, an army chaplain, and his father, who was also an army officer, were serving at a base in Bad Kreuznach.

Getreu spent more than six years of a 10-year sentence — the maximum allowed at that time in Germany — behind bars before returning to his family in the U.S. But his penchant for sexually assaulting and strangling pretty, young, dark-haired women apparently continued.

In 1975, he took a plea deal for a lesser charge, statutory rape, after being charged with the forcible rape of a Palo Alto teenager who was in his Explorer Scout troop. She testified during the Taylor case that he had also strangled her and threatened to kill her if she didn't submit to his assault. His stepdaughter and an ex-wife have also said off the witness stand that he sexually assaulted the girl for years during her childhood.

On Feb. 16, 1973, Leslie Marie Perlov, also 21, was found strangled in a remote area near what is now the Stanford Dish hiking trail, which isn't far from where Taylor's body was found 13 months later. Getreu has been charged with, but not yet tried for, Perlov's murder.

Getreu wasn't on anyone's suspect list, however. Although California had the first mandatory sex offender registry law in the nation, dating to 1947, mandatory federal sex offender registration that could link crimes committed in other states wasn't enacted until 1994. The National Sex Offender Registry database, which is used by law enforcement, wasn't established until 1996, two decades after Getreu's crime in Germany and his Palo Alto conviction.

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It was nearly 50 years until modern DNA testing linked him to the Taylor and Perlov murders. (Getreu still faces trial in Santa Clara County for Perlov's death.)

On Friday morning, Getreu sat motionless in his wheelchair in court wearing a red jail jumpsuit. A pair of headphones were strapped over his ears so Getreu, who is hearing impaired, could listen to the court proceedings.

He remained alert, neither appearing to doze during testimony, nor perking up with interest when photographs of his dead victims were shown on a screen, as he had during his trial.

He didn't swivel his head to acknowledge his only son, the sole member of his family who attended the trial and his sentencing. He didn't look at Taylor's friend, James Schroeder, when Schroeder made an impact statement to the court. During the trial, Getreu had fixed a steady gaze on Schroeder and Taylor's then-boyfriend, Russell Bissonnette, during their testimonies.

Schroeder and Bissonette, who was also present at the sentencing, had been fast friends who met while students at Cañada College. Taylor was "a quiet force of nature;" a serious student; and a wonderful, beautiful person who was well-spoken, kind and who loved nature, he said.

Shortly before she died, Schroeder took photographs of Taylor leaning against his favorite car, he recalled. "I'm so glad to have the pictures," he said in court.

The photographs reminded him of Taylor's vibrant life, a life lost before anyone would ever know her promise and what she would bring to the world, he said.

The pictures are grainy, he noted. It took a few years before he had the film developed.

"It was a simple thing that got lost in the aftermath of Janet's murder," he said.

Schroeder said he is glad he was able to testify during the trial. He feels sorry for the Explorer Scout Getreu raped and strangled and for the deaths of Margaret Williams, Perlov and Taylor and the pain their families and friends have experienced.

Schroeder said he wished Getreu had faced the death penalty. Still, Getreu "will get the justice he deserves today," he said of the life sentence.

Janet Taylor's body was found in a ditch just off the side of Sand Hill Road near Manzanita Road, which falls under Stanford University property, in 1974. Embarcadero Media file photo by Veronica Weber.

San Mateo County Deputy District Attorney Josh Stauffer read additional impact statements into the court record. He asked the court to add the statements to Getreu's probation file for consideration if he ever comes up for a parole hearing. Judge Foiles admitted the documents.

In a moving statement read by Stauffer, Perlov's sister, Diane, noted that she is still traumatized by her sibling's death. She doesn't like tight clothing near her neck and she won't go alone into a parking lot at night.

"The scarf wrapped around her neck was mine," she said.

Fourteen months apart in age, Leslie was the older sister. She was her protector and dear friend.

"No one made me laugh so hard," she said.

Families are affected for multiple generations by murder, she noted. It's not only about memories lost, but the robbing of memories and experiences that can never be made. Diane's son cherishes an oil painting of the aunt he never met and he named his daughter after Leslie, she said.

"I'm relieved that this convicted killer will not murder again," she said. She asked that Getreu not have any opportunity of parole to eliminate any chance of his relief from his crimes.

Stauffer, in his final closing statement, also emphasized the need for Getreu to remain imprisoned to reflect on his crimes.

"John Getreu is the definition of a serial killer. He deserves nothing less than to be alone, locked in a cell for the rest of his life; to be haunted by the killings and rapes" he committed, he said.

Taylor's family has preferred to remain private. Stauffer said her sister thanked the court for the opportunity to view the trial privately from a livestream in the District Attorney's Office. In a report filed in court, she described her sister as fun, pleasant, outgoing, talkative, smart, beautiful, strong, compassionate and well-balanced.

'Words cannot begin to express my sorrow in this case.'

-Robert Foiles, judge, San Mateo County Superior Court

Stauffer also read a victim's impact statement from the brother of Getreu's first known victim, Margaret Williams. Evan Williams, who also testified at the trial, said he was 7 years old when his sister was murdered. Getreu might justify his killings in his mind, leaving their bodies "like trash," but he has seriously damaged other lives. Still, Getreu didn't destroy them. "We have lived and loved," he said.

Since his sister's murder in 1963 to this day, Getreu has never showed remorse for his crimes, Evan Williams noted.

"When you were on trial in 1964, you tried blaming and shaming Margaret" with "twisted lies" during the trial, he said.

"You did not show strength. You showed weakness. You will try to hide in the darkness of your soul. Step up into the light of truth. Stand up and speak the truth," he said.

There's one glimmer of hope that Getreu might someday own up to his crimes, Stauffer noted. On page four of the probation report, Getreu said he wants to plead guilty to the murder of Perlov, Stauffer said. If he does so, perhaps then the families can begin to feel some closure to Getreu's crimes, he added.

Outside of the courtroom, San Mateo County sheriff's Detective Gordon Currie said the most poignant moment for him during sentencing came while hearing the words of the victims' families. He was struck by the effect of Getreu's crimes on all of the families, including the killer's own.

For detectives, a murder and a lack of closure are also emotional and hard. Currie thinks of the many investigators who worked on the Taylor case before him and the avenues of inquiry they went down that only led to dead ends. They didn't have the tools of DNA that he had, he noted.

But Currie knows what it is to live and breathe a case for years in hopes of getting justice for a victim and their family, he said. In that moment, when a long-retired investigator gets a call that a case has been solved, there's a tremendous feeling of relief and closure, he said.

"It's like we're on a peaceful lake and Getreu is a speedboat leaving long wakes in everyone's life. … I'm glad that he's finally out of gas," he said.

Getreu will appear in Santa Clara County Superior Court for a trial-setting conference for Perlov's murder on Jan. 19.

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John Getreu receives life sentence for 1974 murder

Family, friends of Janet Ann Taylor, other victims find relief after 47 years

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Sat, Nov 6, 2021, 9:53 am

Calling the string of strangulation murders and sexual assaults by John Arthur Getreu "evil and despicable crimes," San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Robert Foiles sentenced the 77-year-old man to life in prison and a $5,000 fine on Friday for killing Janet Ann Taylor 47 years ago.

"Words cannot begin to express my sorrow in this case," Foiles said.

He wished that Taylor's parents were alive to see the man who killed their daughter be brought to justice and hoped all of the families and the surviving victims would get some solace from knowing that Getreu would spend the remainder of his life in prison.

A jury convicted Hayward resident Getreu of first-degree murder and infliction of great bodily injury on Sept. 14 after a scant hour of deliberation. His trial lasted 18 days. He murdered Taylor, 21, on March 24, 1974, while she was hitchhiking home after visiting a friend. Her body was found in a ditch on Sand Hill Road near Manzanita Way. The La Honda woman had been strangled, beaten and sexually assaulted.

Witnesses, including his family, a former wife, the family of another murder victim and another victim who survived an assault by Getreu provided testimony during his trial.

Getreu was previously convicted and imprisoned in Germany when he was 18 years old for the 1963 strangulation, beating and rape of 15-year-old Margaret Williams. Her father, an army chaplain, and his father, who was also an army officer, were serving at a base in Bad Kreuznach.

Getreu spent more than six years of a 10-year sentence — the maximum allowed at that time in Germany — behind bars before returning to his family in the U.S. But his penchant for sexually assaulting and strangling pretty, young, dark-haired women apparently continued.

In 1975, he took a plea deal for a lesser charge, statutory rape, after being charged with the forcible rape of a Palo Alto teenager who was in his Explorer Scout troop. She testified during the Taylor case that he had also strangled her and threatened to kill her if she didn't submit to his assault. His stepdaughter and an ex-wife have also said off the witness stand that he sexually assaulted the girl for years during her childhood.

On Feb. 16, 1973, Leslie Marie Perlov, also 21, was found strangled in a remote area near what is now the Stanford Dish hiking trail, which isn't far from where Taylor's body was found 13 months later. Getreu has been charged with, but not yet tried for, Perlov's murder.

Getreu wasn't on anyone's suspect list, however. Although California had the first mandatory sex offender registry law in the nation, dating to 1947, mandatory federal sex offender registration that could link crimes committed in other states wasn't enacted until 1994. The National Sex Offender Registry database, which is used by law enforcement, wasn't established until 1996, two decades after Getreu's crime in Germany and his Palo Alto conviction.

It was nearly 50 years until modern DNA testing linked him to the Taylor and Perlov murders. (Getreu still faces trial in Santa Clara County for Perlov's death.)

On Friday morning, Getreu sat motionless in his wheelchair in court wearing a red jail jumpsuit. A pair of headphones were strapped over his ears so Getreu, who is hearing impaired, could listen to the court proceedings.

He remained alert, neither appearing to doze during testimony, nor perking up with interest when photographs of his dead victims were shown on a screen, as he had during his trial.

He didn't swivel his head to acknowledge his only son, the sole member of his family who attended the trial and his sentencing. He didn't look at Taylor's friend, James Schroeder, when Schroeder made an impact statement to the court. During the trial, Getreu had fixed a steady gaze on Schroeder and Taylor's then-boyfriend, Russell Bissonnette, during their testimonies.

Schroeder and Bissonette, who was also present at the sentencing, had been fast friends who met while students at Cañada College. Taylor was "a quiet force of nature;" a serious student; and a wonderful, beautiful person who was well-spoken, kind and who loved nature, he said.

Shortly before she died, Schroeder took photographs of Taylor leaning against his favorite car, he recalled. "I'm so glad to have the pictures," he said in court.

The photographs reminded him of Taylor's vibrant life, a life lost before anyone would ever know her promise and what she would bring to the world, he said.

The pictures are grainy, he noted. It took a few years before he had the film developed.

"It was a simple thing that got lost in the aftermath of Janet's murder," he said.

Schroeder said he is glad he was able to testify during the trial. He feels sorry for the Explorer Scout Getreu raped and strangled and for the deaths of Margaret Williams, Perlov and Taylor and the pain their families and friends have experienced.

Schroeder said he wished Getreu had faced the death penalty. Still, Getreu "will get the justice he deserves today," he said of the life sentence.

San Mateo County Deputy District Attorney Josh Stauffer read additional impact statements into the court record. He asked the court to add the statements to Getreu's probation file for consideration if he ever comes up for a parole hearing. Judge Foiles admitted the documents.

In a moving statement read by Stauffer, Perlov's sister, Diane, noted that she is still traumatized by her sibling's death. She doesn't like tight clothing near her neck and she won't go alone into a parking lot at night.

"The scarf wrapped around her neck was mine," she said.

Fourteen months apart in age, Leslie was the older sister. She was her protector and dear friend.

"No one made me laugh so hard," she said.

Families are affected for multiple generations by murder, she noted. It's not only about memories lost, but the robbing of memories and experiences that can never be made. Diane's son cherishes an oil painting of the aunt he never met and he named his daughter after Leslie, she said.

"I'm relieved that this convicted killer will not murder again," she said. She asked that Getreu not have any opportunity of parole to eliminate any chance of his relief from his crimes.

Stauffer, in his final closing statement, also emphasized the need for Getreu to remain imprisoned to reflect on his crimes.

"John Getreu is the definition of a serial killer. He deserves nothing less than to be alone, locked in a cell for the rest of his life; to be haunted by the killings and rapes" he committed, he said.

Taylor's family has preferred to remain private. Stauffer said her sister thanked the court for the opportunity to view the trial privately from a livestream in the District Attorney's Office. In a report filed in court, she described her sister as fun, pleasant, outgoing, talkative, smart, beautiful, strong, compassionate and well-balanced.

Stauffer also read a victim's impact statement from the brother of Getreu's first known victim, Margaret Williams. Evan Williams, who also testified at the trial, said he was 7 years old when his sister was murdered. Getreu might justify his killings in his mind, leaving their bodies "like trash," but he has seriously damaged other lives. Still, Getreu didn't destroy them. "We have lived and loved," he said.

Since his sister's murder in 1963 to this day, Getreu has never showed remorse for his crimes, Evan Williams noted.

"When you were on trial in 1964, you tried blaming and shaming Margaret" with "twisted lies" during the trial, he said.

"You did not show strength. You showed weakness. You will try to hide in the darkness of your soul. Step up into the light of truth. Stand up and speak the truth," he said.

There's one glimmer of hope that Getreu might someday own up to his crimes, Stauffer noted. On page four of the probation report, Getreu said he wants to plead guilty to the murder of Perlov, Stauffer said. If he does so, perhaps then the families can begin to feel some closure to Getreu's crimes, he added.

Outside of the courtroom, San Mateo County sheriff's Detective Gordon Currie said the most poignant moment for him during sentencing came while hearing the words of the victims' families. He was struck by the effect of Getreu's crimes on all of the families, including the killer's own.

For detectives, a murder and a lack of closure are also emotional and hard. Currie thinks of the many investigators who worked on the Taylor case before him and the avenues of inquiry they went down that only led to dead ends. They didn't have the tools of DNA that he had, he noted.

But Currie knows what it is to live and breathe a case for years in hopes of getting justice for a victim and their family, he said. In that moment, when a long-retired investigator gets a call that a case has been solved, there's a tremendous feeling of relief and closure, he said.

"It's like we're on a peaceful lake and Getreu is a speedboat leaving long wakes in everyone's life. … I'm glad that he's finally out of gas," he said.

Getreu will appear in Santa Clara County Superior Court for a trial-setting conference for Perlov's murder on Jan. 19.

Comments

Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 6, 2021 at 12:32 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 6, 2021 at 12:32 pm

A life sentence doesn't mean much when he's 77 years old. He should've gotten the death penalty a long time ago.


vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 6, 2021 at 9:32 pm
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 6, 2021 at 9:32 pm

It is indeed tragic that DNA technology was decades away when Getreu committed these murders, but wishing for a death sentence imposed "a long time ago" is not only pointless but also suggests a thirst for revenge.

He has been brought to justice in this case and still awaits trial in the Perlov case. Furthermore, he will likely never murder again, given that his preferred victims will not be incarcerated within his reach. Moreover, taxpayers will not bear the cost of the death penalty process with its years of automatic appeals. Given the givens, this is a positive outcome for his victims and their families and friends. I am grateful.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 6, 2021 at 10:15 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 6, 2021 at 10:15 pm

If you want to be a bleeding heart and coddle criminals, that's your prerogative. The rest of has have compassion for the victims (where the compassion belongs) and the death penalty is the only way to see that a criminal doesn't get paroled, regardless of age. He deserves the death penalty -- period. And so does ANY serial killer. Once again, he should've gotten the death penalty a long time ago.

He will likely never murder again? Give me a break. Hasn't he murdered enough already? If he murdered your family, would you ask the court for leniency?

And taxpayers pick up the tab regardless. He's too old to go through "years of automatic appeals." He's 77, not 35.


vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 7, 2021 at 7:30 am
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 7:30 am

I'm not sure how pointing out the facts that obtain in the present makes me "a bleeding heart [who] coddle[s] criminals" and who lacks compassion for the victims and their families, but I will grant you your anger.

My point is that we cannot change the facts that obtain in the present, nor can we change the facts of the past. He has stood trial and was convicted and will likely be convicted again in the second trial.

Please again consider reality before you accuse me of endorsing murder and being a fan of serial killers.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 7, 2021 at 7:47 am
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 7:47 am

I am considering reality. Californians voted to keep the death penalty, and our bleeding heart Governor overturned the will of the voters. He slapped the victim's families in the face. And anyone who doesn't believe in the death penalty (for the worst of the worst -- serial killers) IMO is showing compassion for the criminal, not the victims and the families. It's commonly known as a bleeding heart liberal. Life in prison (at age 77) when this happened in 1974 is hardly a "life sentence."

You're entitled to your opinion, and I'm entitled to mine. Agree to disagree, and hope this never happens to your family or friends. It shouldn't happen to anyone.


Carson Willoughby
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Nov 7, 2021 at 11:40 am
Carson Willoughby, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 11:40 am

Concurring with Jennifer...this man had 45+ years of freedom despite committing two murders.

Now he can retire at a state penitentiary where he will be well cared for with food, shelter, and medical care at taxpayer's expense.

If these crimes occurred in Texas, the wait list for execution would be very brief.

There are two possible alternatives to achieving true justice in these cases:

(1) Allow the family victims to determine the guilty parties fate, either execution or life imprisonment, OR
(2) Create an intrastate program where convicted CA death row inmates are extradited to Texas for final resolution.

Governor Gavin Newsom had no legal right or reason to dismiss the will of majority CA voters who endorse the death penalty for convicted murderers.

@vmshadle...compassion and forgiveness have their place but in many/certain instances, society is better served if state-sanctioned execution is the final resolution.


vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 7, 2021 at 12:16 pm
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 12:16 pm

You are indeed entitled to your beliefs as I am entitled to mine. That said, I refute your notion that my moral opposition to state-sponsored killing equates to an absolute lack of compassion for victims and families. However much you want to project that on me, it is completely untrue.

I believe that capital punishment represents revenge and not justice in this and in every other case. I am morally opposed to paying for the state to kill in my name. I believe instead in life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Living out one's natural life span behind bars seems like sufficient punishment to me.

You are free to espouse your own point of view, but please stop with the name-calling and character assassination. Take up your anger issues with a professional therapist. I am not the cause, nor should I be your target.


Phyliss Templeton
Registered user
Barron Park
on Nov 7, 2021 at 12:34 pm
Phyliss Templeton, Barron Park
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 12:34 pm

State sanctioned executions offer closure for many family victims and should be exercised with discretion.

The heinousness and callousness of a murder should also be taken into consideration with life imprisonment remaining an option in certain cases.

quote: "I believe that capital punishment represents revenge and not justice in this and in every other case."

^ This is too broad of an excuse for not executing certain individuals who did not demonstarte any compassion towards their victims.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 7, 2021 at 2:43 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 2:43 pm

You attacked my opinion, not the other way around. I was the first to post. My opinion is also very common. The death penalty does provide closure for families, even those who aren't always in favor of the death penalty. He sexually assaulted and murdered women. He's a serial killer, and this happened in 1974. He's lived his life outside of prison, and his victims died. If you can't handle the opinions of someone you disagree with, that's your anger issue. You tried to push your views on me. The death penalty isn't pointless... in the opinion of a lot of us. It's in place to keep someone from being paroled. If you don't want your views challenged while challenging someone else's comment online -- that's not the way it works. Revenge is an excuse, and an excuse that's not commonly held. Especially when discussing serial killers. And Newsom had no right is correct. Why do we bother to vote? Lastly, the death penalty was mentioned in the article. I was agreeing with Schroeder.


Faith
Registered user
another community
on Nov 7, 2021 at 3:40 pm
Faith, another community
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 3:40 pm

The murder occurred in 1974 and the death penalty wasn't in effect at that time, so it was never an option in this case regardless of the moratorium by Governor Newsom. Therefore it is pointless to argue about it, in my opinion.

In regards to Getreu, it is probable he has many more victims. I would like him to be alive so he can be held accountable and face punishment for all of them. Death would be an easy escape that he doesn't deserve.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 7, 2021 at 5:38 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 7, 2021 at 5:38 pm

There was a moratorium from 1972-1976 in the US, but it wasn't abolished. Several states have abolished the death penalty in their own state, but California isn't one of them. The death penalty is still legal in California, even though Newsom issued a moratorium in 2019.


vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 8, 2021 at 8:13 am
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 8:13 am

"You attacked my opinion, not the other way around. I was the first to post."

Jennifer, I do not have anger issues. I believe you projected your anger onto me. Furthermore, I did not "attack" your opinion, nor did I push my views on you as you claim above. In my initial post, I merely pointed out that it regrettably could not be helped that decades had gone by since he murdered those women and so forth.

Yes, you were the first to post, but that does not mean that I am not allowed to disagree with you. You construed disagreement and presenting another point of view as a personal attack.

The fact that your opinion "is very common" does not mean that you get to dictate everyone else's opinion because your position is the one true and only acceptable one. I disagreed with you respectfully without calling you names and casting aspersions on your morality as you did to me.

Furthermore, the death penalty is not the only way to exclude the possibility of parole. Life imprisonment without the possibility of parole (which I have clearly advocated above) by definition excludes the possibility of parole.

Please see Phyliss Templeton's post above. She agrees with your position on the death penalty, but she does so respectfully without the massive defensiveness and name-calling that you directed at me.


NanaDi
Registered user
Midtown
on Nov 8, 2021 at 10:43 am
NanaDi, Midtown
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 10:43 am

@vmshadle: BRAVO for your well-considered and well-stated comments. While I could certainly understand desire for revenge in the form of the death penalty on the part of the families of the victims of this piece of scum, I think our society needs more cool heads such as you and Judge Foiles display in meting out Justice, if it is to remain a civilized society.


valorie25
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Nov 8, 2021 at 10:51 am
valorie25, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 10:51 am

I agree with @vmshadle. Let him rot in his wheel chair in prison and be bored to death. The death penalty is the easier way out. He would die before the extremely expensive appeals even began. No parole board in their right mind would let him go free. Thank God for DNA testing!!! What really bothers me is the fact that he sexually molested his stepdaughter for years. WHY, OH WHY, didn't someone come forward then????


Ariel Fine
Registered user
Charleston Meadows
on Nov 8, 2021 at 11:50 am
Ariel Fine, Charleston Meadows
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 11:50 am

As a person of Jewish descent with European ancestors who perished during the Holocaust, I have no problems with executing those responsible for detestable and inhumane actions against humanity as a whole.

Many Nazi war criminals were either hung or received execution via firing squad upon conviction and this was the right thing to do in lieu of any lifetime imprisonment options. And the same measure was applied to many Imperial Japanese war criminals.

People must be held accountable for their actions and a sign of a civilized society is one that either eliminates or executes the guilty based on their societal indiscretions.

And for those who emphasize that this elderly individual will spend his remaining years in a remorseful manner, dream on.

What if he eventually comes down with dementia or Alzheimer's and has no clue of what he did?

It is far better to eradicate (aka execute) these individuals while they are still cognizant of their actions.






vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 8, 2021 at 1:10 pm
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 1:10 pm

Thank you, NanaDi and valorie25. I understand that, for some people, they feel that the convict should suffer as much as the victims did.

My opposition to the death penalty developed after years and years of personal deliberation. However, because it goes on for decades and is hugely expensive, because it has been applied so unevenly in so many jurisdictions, because people of color are executed at rates far exceeding their numerical presence in the population, because too many innocent people have been wrongly executed, . . . to me even one wrongly executed person makes it immoral. I am also satisfied that a full natural life behind bars is sufficient punishment.

Each of us brings our own religious and moral beliefs, our life experiences, our own interactions with murder (God forbid). In a perfect world, we wouldn't have the need to execute anyone, but here we are.

And so we continue to wrestle with the presence of serial killers in our midst and how to deal with the endless ruining of lives they spawn. We may differ as to how we as a society want to deal with the results, but that's life in a democracy where we are free to argue and debate such matters.

Thank you both for expressing your support.


vmshadle
Registered user
Meadow Park
on Nov 8, 2021 at 1:21 pm
vmshadle, Meadow Park
Registered user
on Nov 8, 2021 at 1:21 pm

Carson Willoughby, I must point out the following:

Your first solution is pure vigilantism. Our country, despite recent behavior to the contrary, is supposed to be "a nation of laws, not 'men,'" as the saying goes. The Judicial Branch of the federal government exists for a reason, and that reason is stated in the U. S. Constitution.

Your second solution, "Create an intrastate program where convicted CA death row inmates are extradited to Texas for final resolution," echoes the Nazi "Final Solution," rounding up Jews and "extraditing" them to concentration camps for extermination. As a Jew, I respectfully ask that you consider the problems with your proposed scenario and leave the administration of justice to the criminal courts system instead.


Jennifer
Registered user
another community
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:14 pm
Jennifer, another community
Registered user
on Nov 9, 2021 at 10:14 pm

Life imprisonment without the possibility of parole does exclude the possibility of parole (by definition) but sadly, inmates are accidentally released. Whether by data entry error or common surname, etc. it happens. Did it ever happen on death row?


Anneke
Registered user
Professorville
on Nov 10, 2021 at 1:18 pm
Anneke, Professorville
Registered user
on Nov 10, 2021 at 1:18 pm

I wonder if this man had anything to do with the disappearance of Ylva Annika Hagner.


Lillian Davis
Registered user
Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Nov 10, 2021 at 1:25 pm
Lillian Davis, Leland Manor/Garland Drive
Registered user
on Nov 10, 2021 at 1:25 pm

Public execution does not constitute cruel and unusual punishment providing it is conducted quickly, cleanly, and humanely as possible.

Throughout the history of mankind, this measure has been used to rid society of convicted murderers and it is very effective towards creating closure.

Given the overall heinousness and callousness of countless murderous crimes, death by hanging, firing squad, electric chair, the gas chamber, and lethal injection are far more humane measures than what many convicted killers offered their victims.

It is also interesting to note that the majority of anti-death penalty advocates have never endured the emotional pain & loss that many family victims have suffered.

The death penalty was reinstated by CA voters and Gavin Newsom had no right to overturn the will of the people.


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