Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Man In Shadows

The Case Stalls

Despite what turned out to be April's deathbed identification of her and Jamie's killer, the district attorney was not ready to charge Williams with murder. Something was missing, and that something was motive.

"We had really no reason for Randy Williams to commit this murder," Galeria says.

With the D.A. reluctant to charge Williams, the Los Angeles detectives turned him over to the state for violating the terms of his probation following his burglary conviction in Ventura County. The state could hold him for up to one year.

Meanwhile, Szabo and Galeria continued to investigate.

"We had a hunch that there was somebody behind this murder," Galeria says.

That somebody, both detectives were convinced, was Kenny Leighton.

 If Leighton had been the "mastermind" behind the killings, and with Williams locked up on a probation charge but aware that he was the main suspect in the Navaroli and Mahoney murders, the two men were bound to talk about it, or so Szabo and Galeria hoped.

In California, as in most states, prisoners don't have the same constitutionally-backed rights to privacy that most citizens enjoy. Prison officials can monitor their telephone calls and open their mail. Earlier in the investigation, the homicide detectives had installed a tap on Leighton's phone and put him under around-the-clock surveillance, but no serious leads had come from either effort. They were hoping for more now that Williams was behind bars.

This time the results were more promising.

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