Update 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 13: Three young suspects charged in the shooting deaths of a Canadian backpacker in San Francisco and a yoga instructor in Marin County have arrived back in California and are now awaiting a Wednesday hearing in Marin County Superior Court in San Rafael.
Sean Michael Angold, Morrison Haze Lampley and Lila Scott Alligood were booked into Marin County jail Monday night on charges of first-degree murder for the killings of tantra yoga therapist Steve Carter and backpacker Audrey Carey.
The defendants are also charged with special circumstance allegations of multiple murders, lying in wait and murder while committing a robbery, Marin County District Attorney Ed Berberian said.
The special circumstance allegations potentially subject the defendants to sentences of death or life in prison without parole.
The trio also are charged with robbery, unlawful taking and being in possession of a stolen vehicle, possession of stolen property from both victims and cruelty to an animal, Berberian said.
Original post, Friday Oct. 9:
San Francisco police say that three people held in Portland for the Monday evening murder of a man on a Marin County trail are also suspects in the killing of a woman in Golden Gate Park last weekend.
Sean Michael Angold, 24, Morrison Haze Lampley, 23, and Lila Scott Alligood, 18, were arrested in Portland on Wednesday and were already facing charges in the death of Steve Carter, 67, a teacher of tantra yoga who had maintained a retreat center in Lake County.
Carter was found shot to death on a trail just off of Sir Francis Drake Boulevard near Fairfax. He was found holding the leash of his Doberman pinscher, which also had been shot but survived.
Angold, Lampley and Alligood were arrested Wednesday after visiting a Portland church that provides meals and services for the homeless.
Portland police say GPS data from Carter’s stolen Volkswagen station wagon — which the trio reportedly drove to the church — as well as surveillance photos and other evidence had tied Angold, Lampley and Alligood to the Marin killing. Police also report they recovered a handgun believed to have been used in the crimes.
Late Thursday, San Francisco police reported that the trio will also be charged with murder in the death of Audrey Carey, 23, who was found beaten and shot in Golden Gate Park last Sunday.
The police statement said San Francisco investigators contacted Marin homicide detectives after learning of the Carter killing because of apparent similarities to the Carey case. Both were “shooting homicides that occurred in wooded or park areas,” the statement said.
San Francisco police said that items that Carey owned were in the possession of the Portland suspects when they were taken into custody. Portland police say all three suspects have waived extradition to California, though it’s not clear when they’ll be transported here.
During a press conference Friday, San Francisco police Lt. Toney Chaplin said investigators believe the same handgun was used to kill both Carter and Carey. Chaplin said the gun had been reported stolen Oct. 1 from an unlocked car parked near Fisherman’s Wharf.
The Oregonian/OregonLive news site quotes witnesses who ran into Angold, Lampley and Alligood at the St. Francis of Assisi dining hall as saying the trio had tried to swap Carter’s Volkswagen for drugs:
“It pisses me off that they brought this heat on us here,” a camper who identified himself only by the first name Richard said Thursday morning.
Richard, sitting inside his van on Southeast 11th Avenue with his two dogs, said he had never seen Allgood or Angold before. But he remembered seeing Lampley in the spring, before police swept campsites in the Central Eastside before the Rose Festival.
He said Lampley was a “fringe” visitor to St. Francis, coming for occasional meals or showers. Other campers and volunteers said they didn’t remember seeing Lampley.
Richard and another camper who declined to give his name fearing retribution said Lampley was trying to trade the Volkswagen for methamphetamine.
“People all group us in together. But there are people who come here who aren’t hard-core drug users and actually need this place,” Richard said. “This makes us all look bad.”
And by way of the Marin Independent Journal, here’s more on victim Steve Carter:
Carter and his wife are former residents of Middletown in Lake County, where they ran a consulting business called Ecstatic Living Institute. The couple offered tantric sex workshops, massage therapy and vacations for couples, and they produced related DVDs and books.
Recently they had lived in Costa Rica before staying with friends in San Geronimo, according to Lokita Carter’s blog, “I am not my Body,” on which she chronicled her treatments for breast cancer. She and her husband moved to Marin for treatment at Marin General Hospital’s cancer clinic. …
… Carter’s widow, Lokita, posted a message to her fundraising site, gofundme.com/lokitacarter, that she was “beyond devastated” by her husband’s death. Lokita Carter, a breast cancer patient, had launched the site previously to raise money for her treatments at the Marin Cancer Institute.
“The devastating news is that my beloved husband of 17 years, Steve, was murdered in cold blood yesterday late afternoon while walking our dog on a popular hiking trail in Fairfax, Marin County,” she wrote Tuesday. “He was shot dead. A murder investigation is in progress.
“I am beyond devastated to face this situation while already going through intensive breast cancer treatment. His senseless and shocking death is incomprehensible to all of us, and this time is the most difficult.
“Please hold Steve and me close to your hearts and in your prayers. I am shattered, shocked, enraged and so so sad.”
Bay City News contributed to this report.