Jury recommends death for murderer, serial rapist
Watts Crips gang member
A jury today, May 7, recommended death for an ex-felon convicted last month of multiple sexual assaults and the first-degree murder of a 16-year-old girl, whose bound and burned body was discovered in an alley in 2003.
The jury of eight men and four women deliberated a day before returning with the death recommendation in the penalty phase for 41-year-old Latece Megale Brown. Judge Bob Bowers set sentencing for June 21.
Deputy District Attorneys Beth Silverman and Eric Harmon with the Major Crimes Division prosecuted the case.
The same jury on April 11 found Brown guilty of 24 felony counts, including the first-degree murder and rape of Jacquiese Williams, and the kidnapping, rape and sodomy of five other young women, who ranged in age from 14 to 25 years old.
Williams, who lived in Las Vegas, was visiting her father in Los Angeles when her body was discovered in an alley on 151 W. 121st Street on Oct. 24, 2003. She had been raped, then tied and bound. Her body was wrapped in a comforter, doused with gasoline and set on fire.
Silverman said the documented 117th Watts Crips gang member preyed on vulnerable young women, tied and bound many of them before sexually assaulting them in 2002 and 2003. He was charged with the murder of Williams and a 21-year-old woman, Aisha High. The jury convicted Brown of raping High, but they deadlocked on the murder charge.
“Brown is a career criminal with a record dating back to 1988,” Silverman said. “While in jail, he committed other crimes, including sodomizing his cellmate. This is a just verdict.
Trial proceedings for alleged “Grim Sleeper” defendant Lonnie David Franklin Jr. accelerated this past Thursday when Superior Court Judge Patricia M. Schnegg unsealed an indictment from the Los Angeles County Grand Jury.
This, in turn, paved the way for Franklin’s arraignment, where he was formally charged with the murders of at least 11 victims, most them young Black women, over a 20-year period, from 1985 to 2007. A twelfth victim survived after being raped and shot in November of 1988.