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For serial stabbing murders, D.A. will seek death penalty for Itzcoatl Ocampo

Homeless Homicides

Anaheim Police/AP

Itzcoatl Ocampo.

The Orange County District Attorney will seek the death penalty against 24-year-old former Marine Itzcoatl Ocampo for the stabbing-murder of a mother and her son, and for murdering four homeless men in a "serial thrill-kill spree," according to a news release on Monday. 

Ocampo, held without bail, is charged with six felony counts of murder with special circumstances for multiple murders and lying in wait and sentencing enhancements for personal use of a deadly weapon, a knife, during the commission of a crime. 

A jury trial is scheduled for Sept. 10 in Santa Ana.  

More than 200 witnesses were interviewed before and after the arrest by the FBI, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Anaheim Police Department, Brea Police Department, and Placentia Police Department.

The accused killer revealed that he selected his victims based on availability and vulnerability, and intended to build a "kill list" of 16 names, according to the grand jury transcript released in March.


Accused OC homeless killer given 15 seconds with lawyer, does not enter plea

Homeless Homicides


Anaheim Police Department photo of Itzcoatl Ocampo. The former Marine is accused of killing four homeless men in Orange County.

Itzcoatl Ocampo, the 23-year-old former Marine accused in the brutal serial killing of four homeless men in Orange County, appeared in a cell on Tuesday at a Santa Ana arraignment that lasted less than five minutes before being postponed.

Ocampo's lawyer asked for a continuance, saying he was given only 15 seconds to speak with his client through a food slot, and did not have enough information to enter a plea. Jail officials also had not conducted a psychological evaluation on Ocampo, reports KPCC's Adolfo Guzman-Lopez.

"He was curled up in a ball under a blanket in underwear, no shirt, no pants," Longwith said. "He looked like a wet cat — a scared, wet cat. It wasn't much conversation," said Ocampo's lawyer of his brief visit on Tuesday, reports the L.A. Times.

Orange County District Attorney Tony Ruckauckas called Ocampo a "thrill kill" case — a person who kills "to see what it’s like to make those kills and he gets a thrill out of it." He expects Ocampo to plead insanity.