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  ROGERS Dayton Leroy 1953   USA ... ... ... 8
Molalla Forest Killer 1987   OR
Verdict/Urteil:
The youngest of three children, Rogers was born in Moscow, Idaho, in 1954. His parents moved frequently, adopting four more children along the way, and Rogers turned to petty juvenile crime after losing his favored place as the baby of the family. In seventh grade, he was arrested for shooting a BB gun at passing cars, but serious violence was postponed until his late teens, with females singled out as his victims of preference. [ReadOn]

20060502: Judge denies NW serial killer's request OR Oregon City Serial Killer News
A judge has denied a request for a new sentencing trial for serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers. A jury sentenced Rogers to death last March for the murders of six women in 1987. Two previous juries also sentenced Rogers to death. But both sentences were overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court. Defense attorneys argued Rogers should get another sentencing trial for several reasons -- including the judge's decision to allow prosecutors showed jurors photographs of victims taken while the women were still alive. Clackamas County Circuit Judge Ronald Thom rejected the request. The death sentence will automatically be appealed to the state Supreme Court.
 

20060308: Oregon jury recommends sending serial killer back to death row OR Portland Serial Killer News
An Oregon jury says a serial killer should go back to death row for a third time.Dayton Leroy Rogers tortured and killed eight women in 1987. The Clackamas County jury was unanimous in its death sentences for six of those murders.

The judge will decide later whether to accept the recommendation.

Two previous juries had also sentenced Rogers to death but the Oregon Supreme Court overturned both of those sentences. One ruling had said the jury must be given the option of sentencing Rogers to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
 

20060308: OR Oregon City Serial Killer News
Serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers sat quietly Tuesday as he watched a judge formally sentenced him to death. RogersRogers tortured, mutilated and killed eight women in the 1980s, dumping most of their bodies in the woods near Molalla, Ore. A jury last week handed down the death sentence, and the judge confirmed it Tuesday. Fiona DeVore was just a baby when Rogers killed her mother. "The only condolence I have is that upon his death, Dayton Leroy Rogers will never be able to hurt, mutilate and murder again. Then maybe for once the punishment would be able to fit the crime. Thank you," DeVore said. Rogers was twice before sentenced to death, both decisions overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court because of technicalities. Tuesday's sentence automatically triggered an appeals process that could last more than a decade.
 

20060304: Send serial killer back to death row, jury says OH Portland Serial Killer News

A jury recommended Friday that Oregon's most prolific serial killer be sent back to death row for a third time.

Dayton Leroy Rogers tortured and killed eight women in 1987, binding them with dog collars and coat hangers, stabbing them repeatedly and mutilating them possibly while some were still alive.

The Clackamas County jury was unanimous in its death sentences for six of those murders.

Judge Ronald Thom will decide later whether to accept the recommendation, after hearing from families of the victims.

Two previous juries had sentenced Rogers to death, but the Oregon Supreme Court overturned the sentences, in one case ruling that the jury must be given the option of sentencing Rogers to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Thom overruled an objection by defense attorney Linda Ludwig, who asked the judge to interview a juror she said was crying and "visibly upset" during the reading of the verdict.

Thom responded that "it's not within my province to go into the manner in which the jury deliberated."

He noted that Ludwig, prosecutor John Wentworth and Rogers all cried at some point in the sentencing trial.

"You yourself were crying during your closing argument, the defendant [Rogers] was crying during his allocution and Mr. Wentworth had many tears in his eyes and had to stop," Thom said. "This has been an emotional trial and I find that not unusual at all."

The jury ignored Rogers' claim that he was a changed man after 18 years in prison.

The former lawn-mower repairman on Thursday delivered an allocution a formal statement by a defendant to the court, often to admit guilt and take responsibility for a crime in hopes of more lenient sentencing.

"There is never a day that I don't struggle from the very core of my heart and soul over the despicable acts I've committed," Rogers said.

In finding that Rogers deserved the death penalty, the jury had to rule in each murder that it was done deliberately and there was a probability Rogers could still commit violent criminal acts that "constitute a continuing threat to society."

The jury heard testimony from a psychologist who said Rogers, now 52, did not pose a danger to other prisoners because he is aging and wants to spend his time helping inmates, including working as a hospice volunteer to comfort the terminally ill.

Another psychologist for the defense said many of Rogers' relatives including his grandparents, parents and cousins had mental illnesses or problems with alcohol.

Defense attorneys capped the three-week trial in Oregon City on Thursday by asking jurors to take his childhood into account, saying Rogers was beaten by a father who also killed family pets by gassing them or running them over with a car.

But the jury also heard a psychiatrist testify on behalf of the prosecution that Rogers would pose a danger if he were ever released, and still suffers from a serious anti-social disorder.

Prosecutors argued that Rogers is a manipulator, not the remorseful man depicted by the defense.

One of his victims was never identified after seven bodies were found in the forest near the town of Molalla. Rogers was sentenced to life in prison for the stabbing death of another victim, Jennifer Lisa Smith, outside a Portland restaurant in 1987.

If Thom accepts the jury recommendation and formally sentences Rogers to death, his case automatically will move to the first step in a 10-step appeals process that could take another 10 or 15 years.

 

20060303: Jury Again Deliberates Serial Killer's Fate OR Oregon City Serial Killer News

Jury deliberations resume Friday morning in the re-sentencing hearing of convicted serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers.

Jury deliberations will pick up at 8:30 a.m. Jurors had only 2 hours Thursday night to deliberate before they were then sent to a hotel for the night.

This is the third Clackamas County jury to wrangle over Rogers' fate. His life has been spared not once, but twice by Oregon Supreme Court decisions on technicalities.

Rogers admits to killing six women in the 1980s, but he's pleading for jurors to let him live.

Rogers addressed the court Thursday in Oregon City. He apologized and appeared remorseful. He offered no explanation for his crimes but apologized to family members and the community.

"There is never a day that I don't struggle from the very core of my heart and soul over the despicable acts I have done. And because of what I've done, I've literally sentenced the lives of my victims' family members to a lifetime of loss and grief," Rogers tearfully said in court.

Rogers pleaded with the jury to allow him to live out the rest of his life in prison, where he says he wants to take part in a prison program helping terminally ill inmates.

 

20060303: Jury Sentences Serial Killer To Death OR Portland Serial Killer News

Serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers has been sentenced to death.

Roger, who admits to killing six women in the 1980s, was twice before sentenced to death. But the Oregon Supreme Court overturned the sentences because of technicalities.

A Clackamas County jury deliberated for just 2 hours Thursday night before retiring for the night. They reconvened Friday morning and had reached a verdict before 2:30 p.m.

The jury chose the death penalty for all counts. The announcement was made just before 3:30 p.m.

 

20060303: Serial killer gets third death penalty OR Bend Serial Killer News
Oregon's most prolific serial killer, Dayton Leroy Rogers, appears headed for Death Row for a third time, after having two previous death sentences overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court.

A Clackamas County jury voted Friday to recommend the death penalty for Rogers, also known as the 'Molalla Forest Killer,' for a third time. Jurors found there was a probability that Rogers posed "a continuing threat to society."

Judge Ron Thom was likely to impose the sentence recommended by the jury, but he postponed formal sentencing until families of the victims could address the court.

The 12 jurors began their deliberations late Thursday afternoon and were sequestered overnight. They resumed deliberations on Friday morning and returned their unanimous verdicts for those murders about 3:15 p.m.

Rogers was convicted for the fatal stabbings of eight women in 1987 by binding them with dog collars and coat hangers, stabbing them repeatedly torturing and mutilating them -- possibly while some were still alive. Six of his victims' bodies were dumped in a Molalla forest.

However, Rogers' death penalty was overturned twice by the state's high court due to technicalities. In overturning the second death sentence, the court said the jury must be given the option of sentencing him to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Jurors in the current sentencing trial heard conflicting evidence over the potential of Rogers, 52, to commit future crimes -- but decided Friday that he probably would.

Defense attorneys capped the three-week sentencing trial on Thursday by asking jurors to take Rogers' childhood into account, saying he was beaten by a father who also killed family pets by gassing them or running them over with a car.

In closing arguments, defense lawyer Christopher Burris also argued that Rogers was a changed man and wanted to help people -- including working as a hospice volunteer.

Another defense attorney, Lisa Ludwig, was drawn to tears and said ordering someone to be executed "represents the belief that redemption is not possible."

Just prior to deliberations, Rogers addressed jurors himself and said being sorry must seem like an insult after what he had done. In a tearful plea as he begged for mercy, Rogers admitted he couldn't say that he deserved to live -- but he wanted to.

"There's not one minute of my existence that I don't think of those hurt by my actions," Rogers said, as relatives of his victims sobbed in court too.

In his nine-minute statement before the jury, Rogers said he had a conscience and "the enormity of my crimes is so disturbing that it paralyzes me."

Prosecutors insisted Rogers tried to pull off a con job and had not truly shown remorse. Deputy district attorney John Wentworth told jurors not to believe that Rogers iwas a changed man, and called defense arguments "silly."

He argued that Rogers was a manipulator, not the Biblical scholar and remorseful man depicted by the defense.

"Mr. Rogers knows what it's like to put a knife into a human body, to cut through the meat," said Wentworth. "We sit in here and debate whether a person who has killed eight people is dangerous. Of course he is."

Scott Healy, another prosecutor, told jurors that life in prison isn't enough of a punishment. He noted that several Seventh-day Adventists have befriended Rogers.

"He has a more active social life than most of us who are working full-time jobs," Healy said.

A psychiatrist called by the state had testified during the trial that Rogers was a future danger to any society he is a part of. Prosecutors also said they worried that Rogers could be put in a medium security prison situation and escape.

If the judge imposes the death sentence, the case will automatically move into a 10-step appeals process that could take 15 years or more. Rogers already has spent about 17 years in prison.

 

20060301: Serial killer changed man, psychologist testifies OR Oregon City Serial Killer News

Resentencing - Medical witnesses disagree over Dayton Leroy Rogers' potential for future crimes

Serial murderer Dayton Leroy Rogers is not a psychopath and he poses no danger to the general prison population, a psychologist testified Tuesday in Clackamas County Circuit Court.

Rogers, 52, is growing older, losing his sexual interest and has no interest in harming anyone, psychologist Kevin McGovern told a jury that will decide whether Rogers should be executed. The jury in the resentencing trial of Rogers, who was convicted in the late 1980s for sexually molesting and stabbing to death eight women, could begin deliberating as soon as Thursday.

The testimony of McGovern, a defense witness, contrasted starkly with early testimony of prosecution witness and psychiatrist George Suckow. Suckow said Rogers is a future danger to any society he's part of, and that he suffers from a serious antisocial disorder.

McGovern said Rogers has changed during his 18 years in prison as two death sentences have been overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court.

"He knows they (his crimes) were horrible and wrong," McGovern said. "He doesn't want to harm anyone. He wants to help others."

McGovern said Rogers has given back by teaching guitar lessons, coaching people about spirituality and cutting other inmates' hair. Rogers would like to help the terminally ill make it through their last days or minutes of life in peace as a hospice volunteer, but he first needs permission, McGovern said.

Prosecutors raised concerns that Rogers could be placed in medium security at the Oregon State Penitentiary, and there's a possibility that he could escape. They also noted that he could have access to basketball games and miniature golf as a member of the general prison population.

Defense attorneys also called Linda Grounds, a psychologist hired to study Rogers' childhood and how it affected his development.

Grounds mapped out a family tree showing that 15 of Rogers' relatives -- including his grandparents, parents and cousins -- had mental illnesses or problems with alcohol. Grounds said Rogers was predisposed to have a mental problems, and an abusive upbringing increased his chances.

Grounds is one of the last witnesses scheduled to testify.

Judge Ronald Thom told the jury that they will be sequestered as soon as they start deliberating after closing arguments, which are scheduled for Thursday. The process could take days, Thom acknowledged.

"I want you to bring an overnight kit," Thom told the jury. "We are going to put you up at a motel."

 

20060228: Defense witnesses describe serial killer as religious, mellow OR Oregon City Serial Killer News

Resentencing trial - Jurors hear from people who've visited Dayton Leroy Rogers in prison

Serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers is a thoughtful, religious man who sends birthday cards, coupons clipped from the newspaper and recipes, witnesses told a jury Monday.

Six people, all Seventh-day Adventists who got to know Rogers by visiting him in prison, said they value him because of his impressive understanding of the Bible and his willingness to embrace religion. Rogers was a Seventh-day Adventist growing up but left the church before 1987, when he tortured, mutilated and killed at least seven women.

Rogers' attorneys called their first witnesses Monday and are expected to close their case as early as today. Closing statements could come Thursday.

Kathy Loewen, a Salem resident and pastor's wife, said she has spent hundreds of hours with Rogers and is impressed with his biblical interpretations.

"He can really dig into the Scriptures, and he comes up with some really good ideas," Loewen said. "We'll say, 'We're having some problems with teenagers at the church,' and he'll come up with ideas that really work."

Loewen described Rogers as mellow and cheerful at the Oregon State Penitentiary in Salem. But during visits at the Clackamas County Jail since his resentencing trial started, she said, "he's broke down sobbing."

Darrel Comstock, a member of a Stayton Seventh-day Adventist church, described Rogers as affectionate and caring. Comstock said Rogers' name and photograph were published a few years ago in a church directory.

Most of the defense witnesses said they have talked little or not at all with Rogers about his crimes.

"He has expressed regret," said Gary Gantz, an Idaho pastor who said that when he lived in Oregon, he met with Rogers nearly 200 times. Gantz speculated on a factor in Rogers' crimes: "I think the vodka unleashed something in Dayton, put his conscience to sleep."

Two Clackamas County juries have sentenced Rogers, a former Canby lawn-mower repairman, to death since his conviction in the late 1980s, but the Oregon Supreme Court overturned both sentences. A third jury convened two weeks ago to decide on a new sentence: death; life in prison with the possibility of parole; or life without the possibility of parole.

Defense attorneys are arguing for any sentence but death.

On Monday, they called Marco Montez, a convicted murderer who met Rogers on Death Row. Montez said other inmates have physically and verbally abused Rogers, whom they consider at the bottom of the prison pecking order.

"He's been choked, spit on, slapped," said Montez, who was dressed in inmate garb and wore leg cuffs. But Montez said Rogers has never responded in an aggressive manner.

 

20060214: Serial Killer Again Faces Death Penalty OR Portland Serial Killer News

The re-sentencing trial for a serial killer is expected to last two weeks.

Dayton Leroy Rogers (pictured) was convicted in 1989 of mutilating and killing seven women, but trial mistakes overturned his death penalty sentence.

Prosecutors are again presenting the evidence and recalling the original witnesses.

The defense admits that Rogers did it but says he is also a victim of abusive parents.

"A story that might help you think about how a person, an outwardly ordinary person, comes to commit these horrific acts of violence against virtual strangers," attorney Lisa Ludwig said.

Ludwig says Rogers has been a model prisoner for 18 years.

 

20060124: Judge denies motion from serial killer's defense team OR Oregon City Serial Killer News
An attorney for serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers contends that a decision to identify jurors only by number suggests that he poses a threat to them and has "tainted" her client's chances of getting a fair resentencing trial.

Attorney Lisa Ludwig last week asked Clackamas County Circuit Court Judge Ronald Thom to stop the jury-selection process and start over with a new pool of potential jurors. The process started Jan. 17 with the orientation of hundreds of county residents.

Thom denied Ludwig's motion, and Rogers' defense team plans to file a petition to the Oregon Supreme Court.

Ludwig contended in the motion that the court's 11th-hour decision to assign numbers to jurors, rather than identify them by name, sends the message that Rogers poses a threat to jurors or family members. In doing so, Ludwig argued, the court has tainted the jury on a point they are being convened to decide, whether Rogers could be a danger in the future.

Rogers was sentenced to death in 1989 for the murders of six women, whose mutilated bodies were dumped in the woods near Molalla. His conviction is not in question, but his sentence has been overturned twice by the Oregon Supreme Court, and his case has been mired in delays.

In 2002, for example, the state Supreme Court ordered that a Clackamas County judge provide jury pool information to defense attorneys because of their concerns about the selection process.

Over the next six weeks or so, a new jury is scheduled to decide whether to again sentence Rogers to death or to life in prison --with or without the possibility of parole.

Thom could not be reached Monday for comment on the jury-selection process.

According to Ludwig, potential jurors have been instructed by the court not to reveal in a written questionnaire their names; their occupations and employers; names of their spouses, siblings or children; where their spouses work; and whether their children are living at home, among other personal information.

"Empanelling an anonymous jury is an unusual measure that is warranted only where there is a strong reason to believe the jury needs protection or to safeguard the integrity of the justice system," Ludwig wrote in the complaint.

Ludwig wrote that courts in the past have ordered jury names be anonymous to protect jurors from defendants who have been involved in organized crime or have a "capacity to harm jurors." Ludwig also wrote that courts have kept jurors names secret when publicity in high-profile cases could expose jurors to intimidation and harassment.

 

20060116: Serial killer gets day in court, again OR Oregon City Serial Killer News

Sixteen years ago, when Lotus Flynn saw Dayton Rogers sentenced to death for killing her daughter and five other women, he was skinny as the proverbial whip.

Now, though, after years of appeals and another one coming this week, Rogers is sporting a potbelly, and Flynn, 74, can hardly bear it.

"We've seen him on TV, and he's been living high on the hog," Flynn told The Oregonian, weeping. "He's been eating good."

Twice, now, juries have sentenced Rogers to death, and twice the Oregon Supreme Court has overturned those sentences.

Beginning Tuesday, a third Clackamas County jury will be selected to review his crimes, with the new option of sentencing Rogers to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Flynn is praying that the new jury determines that the former Canby lawn-mower repairman and married father must die for the killings, known as the Molalla forest murders, because that's where he dumped the bodies.

In overruling Rogers' death sentence in 2000, the state Supreme Court ruled that a lower court erred in giving a jury only two sentencing options: death or life with the possibility of parole. Rogers' conviction is not in question, but in his new trial, jurors will have the third option of life in prison with no possibility of parole.

A few other inmates are also are affected by the Supreme Court ruling, including Robert Paul Langley, who buried one of his two victims in the cactus garden at the grounds of the Oregon State Hospital, and Randy Lee Guzek, who chased down and fatally shot a Terrebonne woman.

Rogers' first known attack was at age 18 in 1972, when he stabbed a 15-year-old Eugene girl after taking her to a wooded area to have sex. In 1973, after striking two Lane County girls with a soda bottle, he was sent to the Oregon State Mental Hospital. After his release the next year, Rogers' crimes continued for more than a decade — in all, he is thought to have killed eight women, usually targeting prostitutes who might not be missed for months.

He is noted, in particular, for the gruesome way he treated many of his victims, nearly severing the head of one, hog-tying others, sawing off feet to satiate his foot fetish, and disemboweling one woman.

His new sentencing trial is expected to last six to eight weeks, with a jury's ruling in March.

If the jury decides Rogers should die, his case automatically will move to the next step in a 10-step state and federal appeals process that legal experts say could take 10 or possibly 15 more years to complete.

Rogers, 52, could be a senior citizen before he's executed, or die first of natural causes.

Through all those years, the bills for taxpayer-funded defense lawyers can surpass $1 million.

Lotus Flynn, a retired barmaid and former bus driver, is tormented by the possibility that she might die before Rogers does.

"I want him to go before I do," she told The Oregonian.

 

20060111: Serial killer returns to court OR Oregon City Serial Killer News

Oregon's most prolific serial killer appeared in Clackamas County Circuit Court on Tuesday as defense attorneys and prosecutors geared up for the start of a new sentencing trial next week.

Dayton Leroy Rogers, a Canby lawnmower repairman, was convicted in 1989 of torturing, stabbing and killing six women in what was known as the Molalla forest murders. The new jury will have the option of sentencing Rogers to life without the possibility of parole.

Rogers was twice sentenced to death, but both times his sentence was overturned.

In the most recent reversal of his sentence, the Oregon Supreme Court ruled in 2000 that the jury should have been allowed to consider a sentence of life without the possibility of parole. Instead, jurors had only two choices: death or life with the possibility of parole.

Rogers was in court as attorneys argued pretrial motions. Next week, the attorneys will begin jury selection, expected to take two to three weeks. The entire trial could last six to eight weeks.

Rogers was lodged Tuesday at the Clackamas County Jail in Oregon City, where he will stay during the resentencing trial. Deputies have segregated him into protective custody. Rogers will be accompanied by extra deputies when he is taken the nearly three-mile route to and from the courthouse each day.

 


Copyright 1995-2006 by Elisabeth Wetsch
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