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View Full Version : Thousands attend vigil for missing CA teen


Steelboy84
03-02-2010, 11:29 PM
By ELLIOT SPAGAT, Associated Press Writer Elliot Spagat, Associated Press Writer 21 mins ago

SAN DIEGO Thousands of people are at a vigil in a San Diego suburb for a 17-year-old girl whose body is believed to have been found five days after she went to a park for a jog.

The father of Chelsea King addressed the crowd at St. Michael's Church in Poway Tuesday night, just hours after authorities discovered a body in a shallow grave and said it is likely that of the teen.

Brent King says one of his nicknames for Chelsea is "Angel." Now, he says, "She's my angel forever."

Chelsea King vanished Thursday. Authorities have arrested a registered sex offender, 30-year-old John Albert Gardner III, for investigation of rape and murder.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

SAN DIEGO (AP) A body found in a shallow grave Tuesday is believed to be that of 17-year-old Chelsea King, whose disappearance led to the arrest of a registered sex offender, authorities said.

The remains were found buried in a park about 10 feet from the shoreline of Lake Hodges, San Diego County Sheriff William Gore said.

"Although positive identification has not been made, there is (a) strong likelihood that we have found Chelsea," he told reporters.

Gore said he had informed the teen's parents.

"Obviously they are devastated and I ask that you respect their privacy during this extremely difficult time," he said.

Police, meanwhile, said the registered sex offender suspected in King's disappearance likely assaulted a jogger in December in the same park.

The 22-year-old Colorado woman managed to fend off her attacker on Dec. 27 in Rancho Bernardo Community Park on the northern edge of San Diego, where King's 1994 BMW was found with her belongings inside, police Capt. Jim Collins said.

Police said evidence has linked 30-year-old John Albert Gardner III to both cases but further details have not been released.

Collins, however, said a swab taken from the elbow of the Colorado woman did not match Gardner's DNA.

Gardner is now in custody without bail for investigation of murder and rape in the King case.

Gardner of Lake Elsinore pleaded guilty in May 2000 to molesting a 13-year-old female neighbor. Prosecutors said he lured the victim to his home with an offer to watch "Patch Adams," a 1998 movie starring Robin Williams

The girl was beaten before escaping and running to a neighbor.

Gardner served five years in prison after prosecutors rejected a psychiatrist's advice to seek stiffer punishment, court documents state.

Prosecutors said in 2000 that Gardner's lack of a significant prior criminal record justified less than the maximum sentence. They also said they wanted to "spare the victim the trauma of testifying."

Gardner had faced a maximum of nearly 11 years in prison under terms of his plea agreement. Prosecutors urged six years the sentence later ordered by a judge.

In their 11-page sentencing memo, prosecutors said Gardner "never expressed one scintilla of remorse for his attack upon the victim" despite overwhelming evidence.

Psychiatrist Dr. Matthew Carroll wrote in sentencing documents, "There is no known treatment for an individual that sexually assaults girls and does not admit to it in any way."

Paul Pfingst, the San Diego County district attorney in 2000, said he had no memory of the case but added a six-year sentence was not unusual for someone with no significant prior criminal record.

The district attorney's office declined to comment or make available David Hendren, the prosecutor who handled the case.

State records showed Gardner was released from prison on Sept. 26, 2005 and was on parole for three years.

Chelsea King was described as a straight-A student at Poway High School, playing French horn for the San Diego Youth Symphony, competing on her school cross-country team and volunteering in a peer counseling program.

In an interview Monday with The Associated Press, the Kings, who also have a 13-year-old son, recounted learning Thursday that their daughter had disappeared.

Brent King had returned from the gym around 5:30 p.m., the same time his wife, Kelly, 48, got home with groceries. Chelsea, who always kept them advised of her whereabouts, wasn't home.

"Because it was so out of character for Chelsea not to tell us or call us and say I'm going to be late ... we just had that feeling," Brent King said.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100303/ap_on_re_us/us_missing_teen


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steelerdude15
03-03-2010, 01:26 AM
That's a shame. I'll tell you what, this is one sick and messed up world we live in. You can only hope that this place will get better one day. :shake01:

SteelersinCA
03-03-2010, 10:23 AM
There has been another girl missing for about 2 years here that they think he may be involved with. Once you are a CONVICTED sex offender, I don't believe you can ever be rehabilitated and they should never ever be allowed out of custody.

beSteelmyheart
03-03-2010, 06:16 PM
What I'd like to know is Why was this man even allowed to return to society????It's as if the whole judicial system favors the criminal over the victim and treats children & women as not worthy of proper justice!!! It makes me so sick at heart to hear about additional monstrous crimes that could be avoided if the scumbag was given the punishment that he deserved in the first place!:banging:

Shea
03-03-2010, 11:34 PM
There has been another girl missing for about 2 years here that they think he may be involved with. Once you are a CONVICTED sex offender, I don't believe you can ever be rehabilitated and they should never ever be allowed out of custody.

I agree.

Keep them locked up forever. Statistics have shown that these broken minds can't be rehabilitated and salvaged so why throw them back into society to devastate another woman and her family? :noidea:

I'm tired of living in a world where I can't go out jogging without being afraid.

steelreserve
03-04-2010, 02:35 AM
Wait, a sex offender was involved? In a kidnap/murder? GET OUTTA TOWN. You've gotta be kidding me.

But seriously, yes, while I agree that there REALLY is a need to watch these guys more closely and make sure they never get in a position to do this kind of crap again -- because let's face it, a lot of sex offenders are DANGEROUS -- I am not totally sold on the idea of a blanket restriction on anyone labeled a "sex offender," because our legal system is absolutely terrible at making sure that only the right people get tagged with it.

Yes, a sex offender in the true spirit of the law is an abomination and ought to be put away for good, but the courts are so broken that you get a lot of "sex offenders" who have done nothing worse than pissing in public, or were seniors in high school dating a sophomore. Lots of them. If they were capable of saying "look, no bullshit," and giving the sex offender tag only to the people who really earned it, I'm way in favor of this. Otherwise, I think incompetence and paranoia is going to mean too many people will be locked up who don't deserve it.

Shea
03-04-2010, 11:37 PM
Wait, a sex offender was involved? In a kidnap/murder? GET OUTTA TOWN. You've gotta be kidding me.

But seriously, yes, while I agree that there REALLY is a need to watch these guys more closely and make sure they never get in a position to do this kind of crap again -- because let's face it, a lot of sex offenders are DANGEROUS -- I am not totally sold on the idea of a blanket restriction on anyone labeled a "sex offender," because our legal system is absolutely terrible at making sure that only the right people get tagged with it.

Yes, a sex offender in the true spirit of the law is an abomination and ought to be put away for good, but the courts are so broken that you get a lot of "sex offenders" who have done nothing worse than pissing in public, or were seniors in high school dating a sophomore. Lots of them. If they were capable of saying "look, no bullshit," and giving the sex offender tag only to the people who really earned it, I'm way in favor of this. Otherwise, I think incompetence and paranoia is going to mean too many people will be locked up who don't deserve it.

I get what you're saying and agree that errors would be made and that the right people wouldn't always be the ones left behind bars with the key thrown away.

That isn't the case here though. From what I'm learning, this guy had five previous rapes with his last being a 13 year-old whom he not only raped but severely beat and strangled in an attempt to kill her. She miraculously not only found a way to survive but found a way to escape his apartment. His sentence for this crime - five years. Someone please explain to me the logic in that!

How does this happen? He should have never seen the light of day in the free world long before he came across that little girl.