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Serial Killer Profile: Leonard Lake and Charles Ng

leonard lake charles ng


On June 2, 1985, Charles Ng was caught shoplifting in San Francisco. He had managed to escape the scene before the police arrived at the scene but Leonard Lake, who was with him at the time was arrested when a gun was found in his car. Leonard Lake, was using an ID with the name Robin Stapley but the police could see the Leonard Lake was clearly older than the idea suggested and they brought him in for questioning.

When Leonard Lake was being interviewed by the police he asked for a glass of water and when he was given it he used it to take a cyanide pill he had hidden in the lapel of his shirt. He collapsed and died in the hospital four days latter. Whilst he was in hospital the police managed to discover Leonard Lake's real identified and found that Robin Stapley had been missing for a number of weeks and the car Lake had been driving at the time he was caught belonged to another man that had gone missing eight months prior.

When the police searched Leonard Lake's home they were stunned by their findings. Lake had been a survivalist and they found writings that said he sure there was going to be a nuclear war. According to the findings, Leonard Lake planned on staying alive in his bunker until the war was over and using that time to rebuild the human race with a number of female slaves. The police for further shocked when they found videos showing Lake and Ng torturing and raping women.

They proceeded to dig up the grounds around Leonard Lake's house and in doing so found 12 corpses buried in shallow graves. Amongst these victims were two entire families; Harvey Dubs and his wife and baby son, and Lonnie and Brenda O'Conner and their baby son. Police also found many charred fragments of human bones, but they were unable to determine the identity of the victims they had come from or how many there had been. In all it was estimated that in all Leonard Lake and Charles Ng had killed 25 people.

While all of these discoveries were going on Charles Ng had used the time to flee to Canada. When he was in Canada he once again began shoplifting and was arrested when she shot a security guard that was trying to detain him. He was sentenced to four-and-a-half-years' imprisonment in Canada for that crime. A long battle between the United States and Canadian governments because Canada generally has rules about not agreeing to extradition when the death penalty is a possibility. However, in 1991 Charles Ng was finally handed over to officials in California.

Charles Ng then did his best to stretch out the court process by hiring and then firing one lawyer after another. Finally in 1998 Charles Ng was charged with twelve murders. The jury were shown the home videos of Charles Ng and Leonard Lake torturing and abusing the female victims but Charles Ng pleaded not guilty on the basis that the victims consented to the abuse, and that Lake murdered them without his knowledge. Still, the jury found him guilty on 11 counts of murder and he was sentenced to death.

Charles Ng is currently on death row in California.