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Let’s do something about psychopaths like Rodney Alcala

Yesterday, I went to the studios of Inside Edition to be interviewed. People want to know what it feels like to have been photographed by a serial killer. How does it feel know that my life could have easily ended in June of 1979 along with the other victims? Inquiring minds also want to know how I feel about Rodney Alcala.

Do a search on “stuck by lightning twice” and you will discover that the odds of being struck by lightning once are 1/3000. The odds of being struck twice are 1/9,000,000. Since there are 300,000,000 people in America this unusual event has happened.

What does a person who was nearly struck by lightning once, and then actually struck 23 years later say about the near miss in the distant past?

An Ohio man Larry Reynolds, was actually struck by lightning twice and he says he feels “glad to be alive!” (How surprising is that?) I too feel glad to be alive. But also feel the need to say genug* and to try to get more justice for the real victims.

Justice for the victims means doing something to reduce the dangerousness of known violent psychopaths.

It is not enough to dispose of or imprison Alcala, we must change the system that enables psychopaths to strike over and over again.

At the time Alcala photographed me he had already been convicted of two violent crimes**. When he was 24, Alcala kidnapped, sexually assaulted and tried to kill an 8 year old girl, hitting her over the head with a pipe. He escaped and was a fugitive for two years before he was arrested in Concord, N.H., living under the assumed name of “John Berger.” He was arrested in August, 1971 after someone saw his picture on a wanted poster.

He also assaulted a 15 year old girl he lured in the guise of wanting to take her picture.

After these two incidents, Alcala killed at least 5.

There is no doubt in 2010 that Alcala is a psychopath. In the 1970s we didn’t have any reliable method for diagnosing psychopathy, but today we do. The PCL-R when administered by trained professionals can diagnose psychopathy with excellent reliability.

I therefore propose that all individuals convicted of violent or sexual assault be evaluated with the PCL-R and thoroughly assessed by trained professionals not hired by the prosecution or defense, prior to sentencing. The purpose of this assessment would be to inform the judge and jury of the presence of psychopathy and other risk factors that indicate the offender will do the same thing or worse again.

Juries and judges should be able to sentence an offender to life-time supervision. We need to train forensic professionals to do the job of monitoring these individuals and we need to watch psychopaths closely if they are released into society. We should stop simply turning convicted psychopaths over to their families who haven’t the slightest idea what to do with them (more on that next week).

I made the above recommendation to Paul Boyd of Inside Edition. He impressed me as a real reporter who was interested in the issues; someone who takes the ethical implications of his job seriously. I just hope his editors give him the freedom to tell this story.

Please everyone get beyond the silliness of “OMG what does it feel like to be struck by lightning twice?” and instead tackle the real question of what to do about sociopaths/psychopaths.

At the end of March, I spoke with a reporter from People Magazine for over an hour and am sorry that I failed to convince him to do a real story and exercise real journalism- or maybe the tabloid editors just wouldn’t publish the real story. However, if you want to see pictures, I am in this weeks’ issue “OMG”!

*a Yiddish word that means ENOUGH, pronounced ganoog

**for more see http://www.ocregister.com/news/alcala-236499-phase-girl.html?pic=4


Posted in: Laws and courts

79 Comments on "Let’s do something about psychopaths like Rodney Alcala"

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  1. Ox Drover says:

    Yea, Truthy, I have one of those “Darth Vadar” masks I wear at night—oh, so sexy, but you know I feel GREAT in the morning when I get up if I wear it and I feel like pounded dog doo if I don’t so I am a COMMITTED and compliant patient. My doctor laughs at me for being the “Only primary care provider she ever saw who is a compliant patient.” I do EXACTLY what my docs Rx. It isn’t always easy but it works and so far I’m actually in pretty good health for my age etc. I accept the fact that at 66 my health is probably going to go down hill from where I am no matter what I do, but I try to do the things that will at least slow down the decline. My PT that I do for my leg is working and I am committed to doing it to get back as much function as I can.

    Ditto the weight loss, low sodium diet, and stopping smoking. Should have done them all much sooner, but was too crazy from stress to focus on anything but the crazymaking…now Ii am trying to focus on improving myself, my health mentally and physically and emotionally.

    I’ve “preached” life style changes to other people for decades but didn’t do it myself…NOW I am finally taking my own advice.

    I was a well paid hypocrite!



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  2. Truthspeak says:

    OxD, yepper – one thing at a time for me. It’s going to be a long, slow emergence from toxicity into whole-self health.



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  3. Ox Drover says:

    Well the photos are surfacing again that were found with Rodney Alcala, some of whom we know are alive, since Dr. Liane Leedom is one of the photos he took (she was 15 at the time and lived near him when he was out on parole between the rape incarceration and the murders—boy,, talk about dodging a bullet!)

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2261597/Rodney-Alcala-Authorities-seek-identify-victims-serial-killer-responsible-130-deaths.html

    I don’t think they were all identified though/



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  4. Truthspeak says:

    OxD……I still cannot wrap my head around Liane’s brush with this man….seriously.

    Eugh….



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  5. skylar says:

    Makes you wonder how many serial killers you happen to meet without ever knowing what they were.



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  6. Louise says:

    Oh, so horribly awful!!! Has anyone else noticed that most of these women look like they were drugged? Either by him or perhaps they were on drugs themselves? Just an observation. Totally unbelievable! I can’t believe either that Liane crossed paths with this monster!!!!



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  7. Ox Drover says:

    Liane said (inn the article posted here somewhere on LF I can’t find it) that his mother was home that day (he lived near Liane with his mother, he was out on parole from a rape) and his mother acted like she was upset at him bringiing Liane there, but Liane didn’t understand the implications… but can you imagine what MIGHT have happened if mom had not been home. I think it was only a week or two later that he killed a girl.

    Yes, it is creepy and scary to think how close we might come and NOT EVEN KNOW IT. I think it was Skylar who got a hitch hike ride from the Green River killer…but of course didn’t know it at the time. I used to pick up hitch hikers back in the 60s..I did a lot of stuuuupid things back then. I just read an article about a web site called couchsurfers dot com or something along that line where people let others come and sleep on their floor and the article was about how UNSAFE that sort of thing is…of course not every person you meet on the internet is a psychopath, but I can TESTIFY that I have met several Psychopaths via the net (and not on dating sites) and allowed them into my home and I GOT STUNG BUT GOOD…fortunately not killed, but you never know these days. Which is why I am SOOOOO AGAINST internet dating sites.

    I met my X BF P in a mutual interest group (historical reenactors) and had known him for 10+ years and knew others who lived in the same town with him and knew him much better, but you know…they all knew he cheated on his then ex wife and didn’t bother to mention it to me til I had dated him for quite some time. So you know, it is important to really get to KNOW someone and KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT THEM before you become too chummy and give them access to your home.

    I’m a LOT MORE cautious now than I ever was before and I would never let someone I didn’t know sleep on my couch and then go to sleep in the house with them…well, I’d probably actually be pretty safe…anyone coming through MY bedroom door would encounter the “Werewolf” before they got to me. LOL



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