27 November 2021 :
Supreme Court overturns death sentence of Dayton Leroy Rogers.
Rogers, now 68, White, is a serial killer dubbed "The Molalla Forest Killer" who was sentenced to death on June 9, 1989 for the murders of 7 prostitutes committed in 1987. In a unanimous decision Friday, the Oregon Supreme Court overturned the death sentence of Dayton Leroy Rogers, citing its own landmark ruling last month that applied the state’s new aggravated murder law to the case of another condemned man. In the ruling, the justices ordered Rogers be resentenced by a lower court, presumably to life in prison. The Oregon Supreme Court’s opinion follows an Oct. 7 ruling, also by the court, that found that 2 years ago state lawmakers had fundamentally altered “prevailing societal standards” for executions after they changed the kinds of crimes that constitute aggravated murder — the only charge in Oregon that carries a sentence of death. In 1987, police discovered 7 women in the Molalla Forest, which the medical examiner determined had been stabbed or cut. At the time, Rogers was in custody on suspicion of stabbing and killing another woman. Police found similarities between that case and the women found in the forest, including that all were sex workers, court records state. Between 1988 and 1989, Rogers was found guilty of aggravated murder in the deaths of Lisa Marie Mock, 23; Maureen Ann Hodges, 26; Christine Lotus Adams, 35; Cynthia De Vore, 20; Nondace Cervantes, 26; and Riatha Gyles, 16. In 2019, the Oregon legislature passed Senate Bill 1013, which limited what crimes qualify as aggravated murder. The crime currently only applies to murders of children younger than 14 years old, murders of law-enforcement officers, terrorist attacks that kill at least 2 people, and prison killings carried out by someone who’d previously been convicted of murder. Clackamas County District Attorney John Wentworth said Friday that Rogers will be sentenced under the laws in place at the time he was convicted in 1987, meaning he’s likely to get life with the possibility of parole after 30 years, a term he’s already served. But Wentworth said Rogers isn’t likely to be eligible for parole. He said he expects the court to order Rogers to serve the sentences consecutively, which would amount to a life term. On the Rogers case see also HoC 07/03/2006, 11/10/2012, 16/11/2015.