Bloodstained Saw, Shears May Be Linked to Murders

From a Times Staff Writer

Authorities searching the grounds of the cabin used by suspected mass killer Leonard T. Lake have recovered a bloodstained electric saw and a pruning shears that they fear Lake may have used to dismember his victims, officials said Thursday.

State Department of Justice spokeswoman Kati Corsault said that some of the more than 20 pounds of charred bone fragments unearthed at the site “showed smooth edges indicating they’d been cut,” but cautioned that “we don’t know if it is animal or human blood” on the tools.

Corsault said the saw was buried behind the cinder block bunker where authorities believe Lake and his suspected accomplice, Charles C. Ng, tortured and killed their victims.

Calaveras County Sheriff’s Deputy Steve Mathews told reporters at the site: “Whether he (Lake) cut them up alive or dead, we don’t know.” Mathews also said a garden hoe “with stains and ashes” on the blade was found at the site. It has not yet been determined whether they are bloodstains, he said.


Authorities have linked Lake, 39, who died in police custody in South San Francisco June 6, an apparent suicide, and Ng, 24, who is still at large, to 19 missing people and three murder victims. Authorities digging around the cabin have unearthed six unidentified bodies as well as the bone fragments.