Authorities: California Inmate confesses to 1979 slaying of Cupertino woman
November 2, 2007
SAN JOSE ” A 52-year-old man already serving two life sentences for murder, with one of his victims being a Reno teacher, will be charged in the brutal slaying of a 19-year-old woman whose death has gone unsolved for 28 years, authorities said.
Prosecutors filed a murder complaint against Terry Childs on Thursday, about two weeks after they say he confessed to the beating, strangling and stabbing death of Linda Ann Jozovich.
Jozovich, 19, was working at a Mervyn’s department store on Nov. 6, 1979, when she vanished during her dinner break. Her ransacked car was found a few days later, and the case went cold for more than 15 years.
In 1995, a hiker found what turned out to be Jozovich’s lower jaw bone and pieces of some ribs in the Santa Cruz Mountains. More remains were found nearby in 2004.
Childs, an inmate at Salinas Valley State Prison, gave investigators information about the killing on Oct. 12, prosecutors said. Authorities said the details he disclosed about the case convinced detectives he was telling the truth.
On the night of the killing, Childs said, he drove around town angry after getting into an argument with his mother and came upon Jozovich in the Mervyn’s parking lot, according to court documents. He grabbed her, shoved her into her car, beat her and drove to the mountains, where he strangled and stabbed her, the documents said.
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Childs is currently serving two life sentences, one for shooting to death Lois Sigala, 17, near Scotts Valley in 1987 and the other for the 1979 fatal stabbing of school teacher Rulan McGill, 32, in Reno.