Victim Balked at Paying for Sex : Last of 3 Killers Gets 21 Years to Life

Times Staff Writer

A transient who pleaded guilty to the June 8 murder of a 49-year-old Canoga Park man was sentenced Friday to a prison term of 21 years to life.

Scott Peters, 24, and two roommates stabbed and bludgeoned to death Lewis A. Levy after Levy balked at paying a $300 debt for sexual favors, prosecutors said.

Levy's body was found in the Jordan Avenue apartment he rented, with 53 stab wounds to his face, head and torso, according to a coroner's report.

Strangulation Attempt

According to a Probation Department report, Peters wrapped a television antenna around Levy's neck in an attempt to strangle him.

Prosecutors said that, three weeks before the slaying, Levy picked up Janet Meyer, 24, while she was hitchhiking. Shortly afterward, Levy began paying Meyer for prostitution, police said.

When Levy later failed to pay for her services, Meyer and her roommates, Candice Fox and Peters, drove to Levy's apartment and forced him to sign traveler's checks, police said. An argument and scuffle ensued, during which Levy was killed.

Meyer and Fox both pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in December. Meyer received a sentence of 20 years to life in prison, Fox 15 years to life. Prosecutors said Meyer received the longer sentence because she was on probation from a burglary conviction.

'Coldblooded Murder'

In a Probation Department report released Friday, the slaying was called a "heinous, coldblooded murder." Probation officer Lea A. Pierce wrote that the "defendant (Peters) shows no remorse or even recognition for his wrongdoing. It is felt he represents a substantial danger and should be removed from society."

Peters originally was charged with first-degree murder. But, in an agreement with the district attorney's office, he pleaded guilty Feb. 21 to second-degree murder. He was sentenced by Van Nuys Superior Court Commissioner Alan B. Haber.

Peters will be eligible for parole after serving 14 years, Deputy Dist. Atty. Norman Montrose said.

"The basic problem was that Mr. Levy got involved with a bunch of sharks who ended up mutilating him," said Montrose.

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