COMPTON (CNS) - An ex-con was sentenced today to 110 years to life in state prison for murdering a woman and two men in separate attacks over an eight-month span in an area where homeless were staying in the Rancho Dominguez area.
Tracy Walker, now 57, pleaded guilty Sept. 16 to three counts of murder for the slayings of Patricia Loeza, Kenneth Edward Jones and Cesar Mazariegos.
Walker also admitted he had a prior strike from 1993 for voluntary manslaughter, according to Deputy District Attorney Hilary Williams.
An affidavit obtained by the Los Angeles Times indicated that Walker told investigators that the victims were “predatory'' and that he had to give “every one of them a serious response to protect his safety as a homeless African-American transient.''
Loeza, 26, was found dead with stab wounds to her upper body in the 19000 block of South Susana Road on June 7, 2020.
Jones, 26, suffered blunt force trauma and been stabbed in the upper body and was discovered dead Jan. 15 in the 20000 block of South Santa Fe Avenue.
Mazariegos' body was discovered Feb. 9 on the east side of the Compton Creek near Del Amo Boulevard, on a dirt embankment near the location where the earlier two victims had been found, according to the sheriff's department. The 30-year-old man died of multiple sharp-force injuries, according to records from the coroner's office.
Walker was arrested two days later by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department and has remained in jail since then.
Mazariegos' cousin, Janet Hernandez, who had once competed in dance competitions with him, said that he “didn't deserve to die the way he died'' but that his death allowed authorities to “find the murderer.''
Mazariegos' mother, Celia, said Walker had taken away any hope she had of hugging her son and telling him how much she misses him, while his 13-year-old daughter wrote in a letter read in court that her father “died a painful death and we all have to accept that.''
Through tears, Loeza's mother, Julia Escudero, said, “I want to say to the defendant, `Why did you kill my daughter?' ... I want God to forgive him because I can't.''
Loeza's sister, Jasmin, said her sibling was “experiencing homelessness, but that's not who she was'' and called her a “good person'' who was loving and caring.
Speaking directly to the defendant, Keisha Grier called Jones a “bright young man'' and a new father who had “great hopes to be an artist'' and “didn't have to be on the streets.''
“Kenneth didn't deserve what happened to him,'' she said of her cousin's son. “You decided to go down the wrong path, not these people ... I hope everything that you have done does eat you up inside.''
Superior Court Judge Michael J. Shultz asked to see posters that included photos of the victims and thanked the victims' family members – some of whom wore T-shirts honoring their loved ones -- for sharing their stories.
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