Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Dayton Leroy Rogers

One That Got Away

Although John Turner, his colleagues, and Andy Eglitis couldn't have been happier with the outcome, they knew that the bizarre case of Dayton Leroy Rogers was not over. It would never be over in their lifetimes, even if Dayton's appointment with the executioner's needle was, in fact, ever carried out. Dayton had left behind too many deaths, too many scars, too many shattered lives, not only among his own family but, especially, among the families of his countless victims, whether dead or alive, for his rampage to be quickly forgotten.

Aside from testifying at his first trial, Dayton Leroy Rogers has not spoken to authorities since invoking his rights against self-incrimination shortly after his arrest for the murder of Jenny Smith, and again when Detective Machado tried to question him about the Molalla forest murders. He has shown no remorse for his crimes. The Oregon Supreme Court upheld his convictions, but his sentence of death was overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court in the spring of 2000 for the second time. Dayton will at some point, likely in the year 2001, go back to court for yet another sentencing phase. If he is resentenced to death, he will die by lethal injection. Otherwise, he will be sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole, an option now available due to the enactment of recent legislation. For now, Dayton sits in a single cell on Death Row at Oregon State Penitentiary. He is allowed twenty minutes out of every twenty-four hours to shower, shave, and exercise.

Many of Dayton Leroy Rogers's surviving victims have started new lives, working to overcome drug habits and become productive citizens. A few have died as a direct result of their life-styles, and others are still working the streets.

Molalla Victim #6 is still unidentified, and there are no new leads to her identity.

One burning question remains in the case of Dayton Leroy Rogers: How many other bodies, victims of Dayton's blood lust, are still lying in Oregon's forests awaiting discovery? Unfortunately, unless Dayton decides to talk, that question may never be answered.


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