Los Angeles County officials expressed outrage over a Northern California judge's order to release the so-called pillowcase rapist to a home in unincorporated Palmdale despite strong opposition from local residents.
Santa Clara County Judge Gilbert Brown issued his decision Friday granting Christopher Evans Hubbart's release within 45 days. Hubbart, who admitted to assaulting dozens of women in the 1970s and '80s, is slated to reside in the 20300 block of East Avenue R, despite public opposition.
Speaking at a news conference Friday in downtown Los Angeles, Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey said she was “extremely disappointed” with Brown's decision.
“We will do everything within our authority to protect the residents of Los Angeles County from this dangerous predator,” she said.
The judge had tentatively approved Hubbart's release in April after a landlord agreed to rent him a home in the 20000 block of East Avenue R near Palmdale.
While safety measures are in place to monitor Hubbart, Lacey said she will be committing resources to assist law enforcement officials.
Hubbart, 63, has been confined since 1996 due to his violent sexual tendencies. Hubbart earned the nickname "pillowcase rapist" because he sometimes muffled women's screams with pillowcases.
He is required to wear an ankle GPS monitor 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Hubbart will attend group and individual therapy sessions twice a week, and will be supervised by the Liberty Conditional Release Program.
A supervisor with the program will also accompany him during any public trips for the first six months to a year after his release.
Hubbart must also report to Brown in San Jose for quarterly progress reports.
Still, those conditions were not enough to satisfy concerned residents, a half-dozen of whom attended a hearing in San Jose to protest the move in person -- and that in addition to emails, petitions, cards and five banker boxes filled with letters Brown received.
In a statement issued after the ruling, Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich said the judge's order failed to consider objections by law enforcement and community members who sent thousands of opposition letters.
“It's outrageous that an admitted sexual predator with a long history of brutal crimes against women be released in this community – or any community,” Antonovich said.