Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Man In Shadows

An Unexpected Twist

West Valley Police Department
West Valley Police Department

Two days after the shooting, Szabo got a call at his office in the West Valley Division station. A nurse at Northridge Hospital told him April had regained consciousness. It was 7:00 a.m.

Szabo, who was working another homicide at the time, dropped everything and rushed to the hospital. It was Saturday and his partner was off duty.

Northridge Hospital
Northridge Hospital

At the hospital, April was in bad shape but awake.

"She was in the intensive care unit, and she was completely strapped to the bed," Szabo says. "She couldn't move her head (or) her arms. However she could speak, very softly. It was a very low whisper, a raspy type whisper."

The detective leaned in close to April. He needed to find out how alert she was before he asked her anything that might later be used in court.

"What's your name?"

"April," came the strained response. "April Mahoney."

"When were you born?"

"January 23, 1973."

"Do you know who I am?" the detective asked.


Satisfied that the young woman's state of mind was functional enough to proceed with a brief interview, Szabo asked, "What happened to you?

"I was shot."

"Did you see the person who shot you?"


Szabo leaned closer. "Do you know who shot you?"


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