Serial killer to be executed
Serial killer Alfredo Prieto, convicted of three murders and suspected of six more, was given two death sentences Thursday morning by a Fairfax County judge.
Prieto, 45, was convicted of the rape and capital murder of Rachael A. Raver, 22, and the capital murder of Warren H. Fulton III, 22, in a vacant lot near Reston in December 1988. He also was convicted of the rape and capital murder of Yvette Woodruff, 15, in Ontario, Calif., in 1990, and has been on death row in California since 1992.
While in prison in California, Prieto's DNA was linked to the Raver-Fulton homicides, and also the rape and murder of Veronica "Tina" Jefferson, 24, in Arlington in May 1988.
A Fairfax jury in November imposed the death sentences on Prieto, and Fairfax Circuit Court Judge Randy I. Bellows said he saw no reason to reduce the sentences to life without parole.
"What you did to those two young people was vile and horrible and beyond the pale," the judge said. Prosecutors said Prieto shot both Raver and Fulton in the back, and then raped Raver as she bled to death.
As Prieto stood to be led out of the courtroom, Raver's mother, Veronica Raver, stood and yelled at him, "Hey Prieto, does your mother know you rape dying dead girls?" As her family restrained her, she added disgustedly, "Twenty two years of this crap."
Prieto did not respond.
Veronica Raver said she had rehearsed her brief comment and that it was not meant to be threatening, merely an honest expression of her feelings toward him.
Four of the jurors who heard the case returned to courtroom 4G to hear the sentence. Rob Shapiro of Centreville said he returned to show "empathy with the family, to show support. To let the [prosecution] team know how well they did. And for me, a little bit of closure, having struggled through such an experience."
Prieto is the first person to receive a death sentence in Fairfax since Mir Aimal Kasi in 1998, for a double murder outside CIA headquarters in Langley. He was executed in 2002.
Fairfax Commonwealth's Attorney Raymond F. Morrogh said he sought capital punishment for Prieto, even though he was already on death row in California, "because he'll never get the death penalty in California. He effectively has a life sentence. I think it was time to bring him to justice for his horrible crimes. I think he got just what he deserved."
In addition to his three murder convictions, Prieto is suspected but not charged in the killings of Jefferson in 1988 and Manuel Sermeno in Prince William in 1989, and the double slayings of Stacey Siegrist and Tony Gianuzzi, and Lula and Herbert Farley, in Riverside County, Calif., in 1990.
| December 16, 2010; 12:17 PM ET
Categories: Fairfax, From the Courthouse, Homicide, Tom Jackman
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