Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Steven Altonio Parker - #33691 – Ely State Prison, Ely Nevada
Years on Death Row - 19 

Steven A. Parker
This came from an appeal in which Mr. Parker thinks the death sentence was excessive in his case. Excessive was killing a woman with a rock and raping her after she was dead; because she wouldn’t give you the time of day in life. That, to me, Mr. Parker is excessive.

Joanne Oscars discovered the body of her daughter, Debra Oscars, in the kitchen of Oscars' apartment. Subsequently, several officers from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) arrived at the scene. Upon entering the apartment, a LVMPD officer noticed evidence of a struggle in the living room area, and found Oscars' partially nude body on the kitchen floor. Her legs were separated, a quilt had been placed under her buttocks, and her T-shirt (the only article of clothing on her body) was pulled up around her neck. The LVMPD officer noticed smeared and pooling blood on the floor around Oscars' body, found identifiable bloody palm prints, and observed that a knife was embedded to the hilt in Oscars' chest. The officer testified that the knife appeared to be from a set in Oscars' kitchen. A three-by-five inch jagged-edged rock was found on the stove. This rock was covered with blood and had a clump of hair attached to it. The police discovered additional finger and palm prints, most of which matched Steven A. Parker's. The police subsequently arrested Steven A. Parker for Oscars' murder.

Two bloody prints lifted from the kitchen floor (on the right side of the victim) matched Steven A. Parker's left palm. Another bloody print found on the kitchen floor (on the left side of the victim) matched Steven A. Parker's right palm. The police recovered two other bloody prints, which matched Steven A. Parker's palm prints, one from the stair banister, and one from the kitchen counter. A print on the cold water faucet and the kitchen sink also matched Steven A. Parker's prints. Other bloody prints were found, but were smudged and unidentifiable.

A medical examiner's autopsy investigation revealed twenty-five irregular blunt lacerations on Oscars' skull, a stab wound in the chest (which had been inflicted post mortem), and several defensive wounds, including bruises on Oscars' hands and a fractured finger. The medical examiner concluded that Oscars' death resulted from multiple blunt traumas to the head and that the instrument could have been a rock. In addition, a leather strap and a piece of electrical cord were wrapped around Oscars' neck, but no ligature markings or other evidence of strangulation were found. The autopsy showed that many of the blunt trauma blows to the head would have caused Oscars' to lose consciousness. Therefore, even after Oscars' lost consciousness, Parker continued to inflict severe blows to Oscars' head with a three-by-five inch jagged-edged rock, crushing the skull. The medical examiner testified that one of the lacerations on Oscars' head was over four inches deep, piercing the brain. The blows were hard enough to splatter blood on the walls, stove, and counter-top of the kitchen. Oscar's head had to be shaved in order to inspect it because blood saturated her hair. Additionally, after Oscars was dead, Parker took a kitchen knife and plunged it into Oscars' chest.

The medical examiner found no evidence of sexual injury, but semen was discovered in both the vagina and rectum. The lack of evidence for sexual injury could have been from raping her after death. And because the semen came from a nonsecretor (a person who does not secrete his blood group substance in his body fluids), the police could not positively identify or eliminate Parker as the source of the semen found in Oscars' body. The semen recovered from Oscars' vagina and rectum was from a nonsecretor. Parker was a nonsecretor. An expert testified at trial that only twenty percent of the population is nonsecretors. Because Parker is a nonsecretor, he could not be positively identified. He was, however, one of the twenty percent of population who could have been the source of the semen.

At trial, Oscars' brother testified that Parker loved his sister and was "infatuated" with her but that his sister did not feel the same way about Parker. He also stated that Parker's love of his sister was a "fatal attraction." After Oscars' brother made this statement, the judge admonished the jury to disregard it, and defense counsel moved for a mistrial. In a subsequent discussion outside of the jury's presence, the judge denied the motion but warned the prosecutor not to use the words "fatal attraction" during closing argument.

The jury found Parker guilty of first degree murder with the use of a deadly weapon. After the penalty hearing, the jury sentenced Parker to death. The jury found four aggravating circumstances: (1) the murder was committed by someone under a sentence of imprisonment; (2) the murder was committed by someone previously convicted of a felony involving the use or threat of violence; (3) the murder was committed during the commission of or attempted commission of sexual assault; and (4) the murder involved torture, depravity of mind, or mutilation of the victim.

An aggravating factor found by the jury, was that the murder was committed during the commission of or attempted commission of sexual assault, is also supported by the evidence. There was extensive testimony that Steven A. Parker was obsessively infatuated with Oscars. The condition of the apartment indicated that a struggle had occurred. The semen found in Oscars' vagina and rectum clearly shows that sexual intercourse took place. Other evidence supports the finding that the sexual intercourse was not consensual and that Parker was the assailant. The living room carpet and couch cushions were spotted with blood and a clump of Oscars' hair was found on one of the couch cushions. The police found Oscars' underpants and shorts, which were spotted with blood, in the living room which suggests that the sexual assault started there. Oscars' body, found in the kitchen, was naked, except for a T-shirt which had been pulled up to reveal her breasts. A quilt had been placed under her buttocks, which propped this portion of her body off the floor. Parker's bloody palm prints were found on each side of Oscars' naked body, in a position that suggests that Parker had mounted Oscars from the top. The rock used as a bludgeon, the ligatures, the post mortem plunging of the knife into the chest, and the apparent sexual penetration upon a corpse, reveal that this was a crime of depravity.

According to Blackstone in Nevada, it’s very clear that DNA testing is being conducted on the semen samples found with Ms. Oscars. This is a very lengthy and in-depth case, but one that I think merits the death penalty if one ever does.

May Steven Altonio Parker stay on death row until his death warrant is read and the needle starts the process of ending his sick and miserable life.

More links for Steven A. Parker