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Rodney Alcala

“I was out doing my patrols. We just started our shift that day.
I was driving down Sunset Boulevard. And I had received a call,”
Los Angeles Police Officer Chris Camacho recalls of that September morning in 1968.
“A beige colored car with no license plates was following this little girl.”

“Tali Shapiro was an 8-year-old girl walking to school back in 1968,”
says Orange County Deputy District Attorney Matt Murphy.

“A good Samaritan, a witness, sees the little girl,
the little 8-year-old Tali get in the car.
Thinks it’s suspicious… follows him and puts a call into LAPD,”
says Los Angeles Detective Steve Hodel.

“I went to that location,” Camacho recalls.
“And I started knocking. I said ‘Police officer.
Open the door. I need to talk to you.’
This male appeared at the door.

“I will always remember that face at that door – very evil face.

“And he says, ‘I’m in the shower. I gotta get dressed.’ I told him ‘OK.
You got 10 seconds. Open this door I want to talk to you.’ Finally, I kicked the door in.

“The image will be with me forever…
We could see in the kitchen there was a body on the floor, a lot of blood.”

“They say a picture says a thousand words,” Murphy says,
“and that image of those little white Mary Janes on that floor
with that metal bar that he used to strangle her with… and that puddle of blood,
it just looks like too much blood to come out of – a tiny little 8-year-old like that.”

“She had been raped. There was no breathing…
I thought she was dead. We all thought she was dead,” Camacho recalls.
“So I grabbed a towel and I picked up the edge of the bar and I –
I laid it off to the side.”

“We started searching the residence…
there was a lot of photograph equipment,” Camacho continues.

“All of us were amazed at the amount of photographs he had there of young girls,
very young girls.

“We found – a lot of ID, picture ID of a Rodney Alcala.
He was a student at UCLA – an undergrad student.”

Source: CBS News.com


The photographs I have presented here tell us the tale of a gifted man looking out beauty.
They also tell the story about a man looking for warmth and closeness.
Photographs depict the outer world, and reflect a part of the photographer’s personality.
Photographs don’t tell the truth, they only show what the photographer was looking for.

This man, whose deeds are provoking hatred and disgust in me, is not a monster,
though his deed are monstrous.
Hopes and fears, the need for affection and contact he shares with us.
What has happened to him to turn out this way?