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Death Penalty for ‘Most Prolific’ LA Killer

Posted Jul 10, 2007 5:09 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Updated: A pizza deliveryman and convicted rapist who reportedly has murdered more victims than any other serial killer in Los Angeles history was sentenced to death today.

Chester Turner, 40, received a capital sentence from Superior Court Judge William Pounders, who ratified a jury's death penalty recommendation and told him his guilt was established "beyond all doubt," reports the Los Angeles Times.

Turner, the "most prolific" L.A. serial killer ever, murdered 10 women, one of whom was pregnant, the newspaper says, strangling eight with his bare hands. He was convicted April 30 of the murders, which took place between 1987 and 1998 in South Los Angeles and the skid row area of downtown—four of them within six blocks of his home.

DNA evidence linked Turner--who is also suspected in the murders of four more women--to his crimes. It also cleared another man, who had been wrongfully convicted in three of these four additional murders now attributed to Turner, reports the Associated Press. A mentally disabled janitor, David Allen Jones, 44, was freed in 2004 after serving 11 years in prison for the three murders, and received $720,000 in compensation.

According to a pre-sentence investigation report by the state's probation department, the Times says, Turner "not only took pleasure in torturing and killing the women, but he apparently got pleasure from seeing the pain he caused their families to endure when he went to dinners held in the homes of the victims' families after the funerals."

(Originally posted at 3:09 p.m.)

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