serial killers by name [w] amazon
  WOODFIELD Randall Brent 1950   USA ... ... ... 13+
I-5 Killer 1979 1981 CA WA OR WA
Born at Salem, Oregon, in December 1950, Randy Woodfield was the classic, all-American boy next door. He made good grades, and high school coaches recognized his natural athletic talents, making him the star of Newport's football team. When Woodfield started to expose himself in public, everybody laughed it off at first, and members of the coaching staff suppressed his first arrest to keep him eligible for the squad. In August 1970, attending college in Ontario, Oregon, he was picked up again, this time for vandalizing an ex-girlfriend's apartment. Two years later, in Vancouver, Washington, he logged his first adult arrest on charges of indecent exposure, receiving a suspended sentence. A similar arrest, in Portland, earned him more suspended time in June of 1973. Woodfield got a break that year, when he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers, but he could not shake his problems with a trip across the country. In 1974, after a dozen "flashing" incidents called unwelcome attention to Randy, the Packers gave up and sent him home. The local boy-made-good was coming home in failure, a disgrace. In early 1975, several Portland women were accosted by a knifewielding man, forced to perform oral sex before they were robbed of their handbags. Policewomen were staked out as decoys, and Woodfield was arrested on March 3, after stealing marked money from one of the officers. In April, he pled guilty to reduced charges of second-degree robbery, receiving a sentence of ten years in prison. Four years later, in July 1979, Woodfield was freed on parole. On October 9, 1980, a former classmate of Randy's, Cherie Ayers, was raped and murdered in Portland, bludgeoned about the head and stabbed repeatedly in the neck. Woodfield was routinely questioned and refused to sit for polygraph examinations. Homicide detectives found his answers generally "evasive and deceptive," but his blood type did not match the semen found inside the victim's body, and he was not charged. A short month later, still in Portland, Darci Fix and Doug Altic were shot to death, execution-style, in Altic's apartment. A .32-caliber revolver was missing from the scene, and while the female victim had been formerly involved with one of Woodfield's closest friends, police had nothing to suggest that Randy was the killer. On December 9, 1980, a young bandit wearing a fake beard held up a gas station in Vancouver, Washington. Four nights later, in Eugene, Oregon, the same man raided an ice cream parlor, rebounding on December 14 with the robbery of a drive-in restaurant at Albany. A week later, in Seattle, the gunman added a new twist, trapping a waitress in the restroom of a chicken restaurant and forcing her to masturbate him. Twenty minutes later, smiling through his phony beard, he robbed another ice cream parlor and escaped with cash in hand. January was another busy month for the gunman police were already calling the "1-5 bandit," after his apparent highway of preference. On the eighth, he raided the same Vancouver gas station a second time, forcing a female attendant to expose her breasts after looting the till. Three days later, he roPÃ...
..”Á..bbed a market in Eugene, surfacing at Sutherlin, Oregon, on January 12, to wound a female grocery clerk with gunfire. He was wearing the fake beard in Corvallis, on January 14, when he invaded a home occupied by two sisters, aged eight and ten; the girls were forced to disrobe before fellating their assailant. In Salem, four days later, the target was an office building, where he killed Shari Hull and wounded Beth Wilmot, after sexually abusing both women. The bandit rounded off his month on January 26 and 29, with robberies in Eugene, Medford, and Grant's Pass (fondling a clerk and female customer in the latter case). On February 3, 1981, Donna Eckard, 37, and her 14-year-old daughter were found dead in their home at Mountain Gate, California, north of Redding. Together in bed, each had been shot several times in the head, with lab tests revealing the girl had been sodomized. The same day, a female clerk was kidnapped, raped and sodomized after a holdup in Redding. An identical crime was reported from Yreka, on February 4, and the bandit robbed an Ashland motel that same night. Five days later, in Corvallis, he held up a fabric store, molesting the clerk and her customer before departing. February 12 witnessed a triple-header, with robberies in Vancouver, Olympia, and Bellevue, Washington -- the last two stops including three more sexual assaults. On February 15, Julie Reitz -- a former girlfriend o Woodfield's -- was shot and killed at her home in Beaverton, Oregon. The investigation had focused on Randy by February 28, and by that time the 1-5 gunman had struck three more times, in Eugene on February 18 and 21, with a final sex assault in Corvallis on February 25. Interrogation of Woodfield on March 3, 1981, led to a search of his apartment two days later. On March 7, he was taken into custody after several victims picked him from a police lineup. By March 16, indictments were rolling in from various jurisdictions in Washington and Oregon, including multiple counts of murder, rape and sodomy, attempted kidnapping, armed robbery, and possession of firearms by an ex-convict. The courts in Salem got to Woodfield first, on charges of murder, attempted murder, and two counts of sodomy. Convicted of all counts on June 26, 1981, the all-American killer was sentenced to a prison term of life plus 90 years. By December, conviction of sodomy and weapons charges in Benton County, Oregon, had added 35 more years to Randy's time. As officers began to follow Woodfield's trail along I5, they stumbled over other victims. Sylvia Durante, 21, had been strangled in Seattle and dumped beside the highway in December 1979. Three months later, 19-year-old Marsha Weatter and 18-year-old Kathy Allen had vanished while thumbing rides along I-5, outside Spokane; their corpses had been found in May, following the eruption of Mt. Saint Helens. At least four women had died around Huntington Beach, California, while Woodfield was sunning himself in the area, all killed in typical style. Despite his seeming links with 13 homicides (at least) and countless other crimes, the I-5 killer would not go to court on the majority of his offenses. Unable to afford an endless string of trials, the state was satisfied to know that Woodfield would be off the highways for a century or so.

Randy was a typical All-American boy with a slight problem... he enjoyed exposing himself. At first everyone ignored it because he was the star of his high school football team. By 1973 his athletic ability got him drafted by the Green Bay Packers. Unfortunately, after a few "incidents," the Packers sent him back to home and his glory days as a star athlete came to a crashing halt.
Back in Oregon he graduated to accosting women at knife point, robbing them and exposing himself. In 1975 he was arrested after accosting a policewomen in a Portland Park. For this escalation in his "sexual deviancy" he was handed a ten-year sentence. While in jail he became a born again zealot and started seeing the prison psychologist. After four years behind bars he convinced authorities he was a "changed man" and was released and judged not to be risk to society.
After being released Randy dropped his messianic convictions and stepped right back into his life of crime. Around then he became known as the "I-5 Bandit" for blazing down his favorite highway hell-bent on crime. During the holdups, he would force cashiers to expose their breasts and/or perform fellatio on him.
The restless type, Randy also started a side hobby as a serial rapist and killer. The typical serial killer living two distinctively separate lives Randy, on the one hand was driving up and down the I-5 committing up to 22 attacks, and on the other, he worked as a bartender and was a relentless partier and womanizer. He had a staple of women whom he courted by phone, mail and in person. Always on the move, as he visited one girlfriend after another he managed to slip a little rape in murder into his busy travel schedule.
Randy was questioned by the police after his first kill was discovered. He was released when his semen did not match the type discovered in the corpse. Upon release he continued killing in his truly disorganized fashion. He enjoyed committing his crimes wearing a hood, a fake beard and a bandage on the bridge of his nose, which became the signature look of the "I-5 Killer".. As police from several counties got together to brainstorm on whether they had a serial killer responsible for a string of slayings spanning from Bellevue, Washington to Redding California, the name of Randy Woodfield and his champagne colored Volkswagen Bug kept popping up. On March 1981 the police took him in again for questioning and, using his phone bills, were able to unravel his trail of blood.
During his trial the seemingly All-American hero was exposed as a vicious sexual predator who showed no remorse for rape and murder. Evidence against him included his penchant for calling girlfriends from phone booths near many of the crime scenes. He also transmitted genital herpes to several of his surviving victims. On a celebrity side note, the prosecuting attorney that convicted Randy was Chris Van Dyke, the son of celebrated comedian Dick Van Dyke.
While in jail, Randy continued his volumes of correspondence to many different women to whom he professed his innocence. Once he realized he was not getting out of jail, Randy started writing to women in other Oregon penitentiaries. One of his jailhouse conquest was Diane Downs, another celebrity killer who made headlines when she shot herself and her three children to get rid of them and win back her married lover.
Although it is believed that Randy committed up to 13 murders, he was only tried for three receiving life plus 190 years. Many other counties -- including Shasta County in California -- wanted to get their hands on Randy and give their victims their day in court. But as it became obvious that Randy would never be free again many saw the financial burden that would be incurred by such a high profile case and decided not to prosecute.

Copyright 1995-2005 by Elisabeth Wetsch
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