You Be the Judge The Ted Bundy Court Case Part 2

About the Ted Bundy case of murder, history of the trial. Read the facts and decide for yourself.


The Theodore Bundy Case (1979)

Then on Oct. 2, 1975, 19-year-old Carol DaRonch picked Bundy out of a police lineup and identified him as the man who had attempted to handcuff her and force her into his car one night in Murray, U., almost a year earlier. Bundy, who had had a pair of handcuffs in his car when he was stopped for a traffic violation, was adjudged guilty and sentenced to 1 to 15 years in prison. While investigating the DaRonch case, the police became convinced that Bundy was also involved in the murder of Caryn Campbell. In 1977 he was extradited from Utah to Colorado, but before he could be brought to trial in the Campbell case, he executed two daring escapes. The first escape occurred on June 7, when Bundy, left alone in a room in Pitkin County Courthouse in Aspen, jumped out of a second-story window. It took police seven days to capture him. Although he was suspected of committing a heinous crime, the daring fugitive was regarded as a folk hero in some circles, a reputation that endured throughout his future legal battles. On Dec. 30, Bundy again outwitted authorities when he escaped from his jail cell by crawling through a lighting panel in the ceiling. (He had to lose 35 lb. in order to fit into the 18-in. hole.)

Bundy fled cross-country to Tallahassee, Fla., where he moved into the Oak, a rooming house four blocks away from the Chi Omega sorority house. When Levy and Bowman were murdered, several residents of the Oak were suspects, but Bundy was not among them. During this period he became adept at stealing cars and credit cards. His precarious life-style was bound to collapse, and eventually he was arrested while driving a stolen VW in Pensacola. Bundy gave the police a phony name, and it was 36 hours before they realized who their prisoner really was. Five days earlier Ted Bundy had made the FBI's Ten Most Wanted list.

Once he was back in custody, he became a suspect in the Chi Omega killings. In June, 1979, he went on trial for the murders of Lisa Levy and Margaret Bowman. It was a landmark case for two reasons: first, because the state of Florida allowed cameras into the courtroom to record the proceedings; and second, because Bundy, a former law student, took an active part in his own defense. A year later he was tried for the murder of Kimberly Leach.

The Prosecution's Points: The first person to suspect Bundy's involvement in the Seattle murders was his former fiancee, Liz Kloepfer. In 1974 she told police that Bundy resembled a composite drawing of the killer, and that he had once been inspired by the book The Joy of Sex to tie her up and nearly strangle her. She added that his sex drive had decreased about the time the murders began. Some of the Seattle victims had reportedly been accosted by a man with a plaster cast on his arm. Kloepfer said that Bundy owned a fake arm cast. But the police considered her accusations merely sour grapes coming from a jilted girl friend. She was never summoned to testify against Bundy.

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