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SKINHEAD FOUND GUILTY OF MURDER; KILLING IN ANTELOPE VALLEY WAS RACIALLY MOTIVATED, JURY FINDS.



Byline: Daily News Staff and Wire Services

A Lancaster skinhead skinhead

Member of an international youth subculture characterized by hair and dress styles evoking aggression and physical toughness. Typical skinhead style includes shaved heads, combat boots, tattoos, and prominent body piercings.
 was found guilty Thursday of first-degree murder in the 1995 racially motivated beating death of an African-American transient.

Randall Rojas, 24, who was convicted two years ago in another Antelope Valley This article is about the Los Angeles County region. For the census-designated place in Wyoming, see Antelope Valley-Crestview, Wyoming.

The Antelope Valley
 hate crime, faces life in prison without the possibility of parole for the slaying of Milton Walker Jr., who the jurors declared had been killed because of his race.

``Personally, as an American, I would never want such racist beliefs to be a basis for such a crime,'' juror juror n. any person who actually serves on a jury. Lists of potential jurors are chosen from various sources such as registered voters, automobile registration or telephone directories.  Fred Totten of Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850.  said outside court. ``The fact that this happened when they were so young, teen-agers, I can't believe with the progress we've had in the past 20 years that this kind of crime could still happen.''

The juror said there was overwhelming evidence pointing to hate of African-American people as the motive.

``There was an accumulation of evidence piled on top of another,'' Totten said.

Walker was fatally beaten with a board in a vacant lot behind a McDonald's restaurant in the 800 block of West Avenue I two days after Thanksgiving 1995. Walker's battered body was found by an employee of a neighboring neigh·bor  
n.
1. One who lives near or next to another.

2. A person, place, or thing adjacent to or located near another.

3. A fellow human.

4. Used as a form of familiar address.

v.
 business shortly after 9 p.m.

Rojas, Ritch Bryant, 20, and Jessica Colwell, 20, are charged with murdering Walker, who prosecutors say was killed to earn his killers lightning bolt Lightning bolt may refer to
  • Lightning discharge, electrical discharge within clouds or between clouds and the ground
  • Thunderbolt, a traditional expression for a discharge of lightning or a symbolic representation thereof
 tattoos, considered a badge of honor among white supremacists white supremacist
n.
One who believes that white people are racially superior to others and should therefore dominate society.



white supremacy n.

Noun 1.
.

Two other separate juries continued to deliberate Thursday on the cases against Bryant and Colwell.

A fourth defendant, Michael Thornton Michael Edwin Thornton (born 23 March 1949 in Greenville, South Carolina) is a Medal of Honor recipient for actions as a United States Navy Petty Officer serving during the Vietnam War. , testified at a July 1998 preliminary hearing that he, Bryant and Rojas decided to go to McDonald's and ran into a white woman who said Walker had kicked her in the back. Thornton's videotaped testimony was played for the jurors.

Thornton testified that the three approached Walker, and Thornton punched the victim after asking whether he kicked a white woman, officials said.

Rojas then came up from behind and hit Walker in the face with a board, beating the victim until Thornton pulled him off and ordered him to stop, Thornton testified.

After the three left, Thornton testified that Bryant said he wanted to ``earn bolts'' - tattoos that for members of the Nazi Low Riders prison gang indicates the wearer has killed a minority - and returned to the scene with Colwell less than an hour later.

Thornton testified that Bryant told him the next day that he earned his bolts. Bryant hit the victim with a two-by-four and Colwell poked Walker in the eye with a pole, prosecutors said.

Bryant and Rojas already have been sentenced to prison for hate crimes.

In March 1997, Rojas was sentenced to two years in prison after he admitted beating a Latino outside a 7-Eleven in September 1995.

Bryant was sentenced to eight years in prison for a December 1995 attack on an African-American student at Antelope Valley High School Antelope Valley High School is located in Lancaster, California and is part of the Antelope Valley Union High School District. It was founded in 1912[1]. It is located in the Mojave Desert. . He pleaded guilty to assault and admitted committing a hate crime in the beating and stabbing of the African-American student with a screwdriver screwdriver,
n See instrument, screwdriver.
 as he walked across the Antelope Valley High baseball field between classes.

Rojas, a stocky stock·y  
adj. stock·i·er, stock·i·est
1. Solidly built; sturdy.

2. Chubby; plump.



stocki·ly adv.
 young man with slicked-back hair, watched the clerk closely as she read the four guilty verdicts - murder, committing a hate crime, acting in concert with other attackers and personally using a deadly weapon deadly weapon n. any weapon which can kill. This includes not only weapons which are intended to do harm like a gun or knife, but also blunt instruments like clubs, baseball bats, monkey wrenches, an automobile or any object which actually causes death. .

Dressed in a pin-striped oxford shirt and army green pants, his hands folded on the table in front of him, Rojas appeared to sink lower in his chair with each guilty verdict.

Superior Court Judge Lance A. Ito, who presided over the trial, thanked the somber jurors for completing their ``unpleasant task.''

``I'm sorry you had to be the people to shoulder this burden,'' Ito said. ``I apologize for having to subject you to this type of case and understand that this experience will last with you for the rest of your life For The Rest Of Your Life is a British game show on ITV, hosted by Nicky Campbell. It is produced by Initial, a company of Endemol. Format
Round One
.''

Outside court, the jury foreman, who asked to remain anonymous, said the panel believed Rojas had delivered the killing blow to Walker's head during the first of two attacks despite uncertainty about when the victim died.

Some testimony suggested that Walker was still alive later that evening, when Bryant and Colwell allegedly returned to the lot and beat him in the head with a metal pipe and the same wooden board Rojas used.

The jury foreman said the panel's only difficulty was deciding whether it should be first- or second-degree murder, but the hate-crime finding was easy.

``He was a self-described member of the Nazi Low Riders,'' the foreman said. ``The testimony that he wanted to earn those lightning bolts was compelling. We also heard that there were racial epithets used. This crime was appalling and unacceptable.''
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Nov 5, 1999
Words:784
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