Oregon Man Arrested in Attempted Murder of Prostitute
A homicide task force investigating a four-year series of killings arrested an Oregon man in connection with the attempted murder of a San Diego County woman, officials said Thursday.
Glesty Donald Waters, 35, a self-employed mechanic living in Coos Bay, Ore., was arrested there Wednesday night by members of the San Diego Metropolitan Homicide Task Force, sheriff’s Sgt. Liz Foster said.
She did not know whether Waters was linked to the disappearance of 40 women whose bodies were found dumped in remote parts of San Diego County. One man has been charged with one of those killings.
“I don’t know if there’s a strong link at all” to any of the other slayings, she said. “But that’s something (the task force will) have to look at. . . . They would be remiss if they didn’t.”
Detectives located Waters in Oregon and arrested him on a warrant, said Foster, a spokeswoman for the task force, who declined to say whether he is a suspect in 40 similar “Green River” slayings in the Pacific Northwest.
Green River task force investigators had gone for the day Thursday and could not be reached, said a police spokesman in King County, Wash. Coos Bay police and officials at the Coos County jail refused to discuss Waters’ arrest.
Waters is charged with attempted murder; assault with a deadly weapon; assault with serious injury; robbery and kidnap in the Jan. 6 attack on Helen Ruth Toy, 33, of Chula Vista.
Waters waived his right to an extradition hearing and was being held in lieu of $300,000 bail, Foster said. She didn’t know when he would be returned to San Diego for arraignment on the charges.
Foster said she didn’t know what led investigators to arrest Waters, and didn’t know whether the victim had identified him.
The 6-foot-1, 180-pound Waters, is considerably smaller than the 240-pound attacker Toy described to authorities, Foster said, adding that she couldn’t explain the discrepancy.
Toy, who has a record of prostitution arrests, told police she was picked up by her attacker on a Southeast San Diego street. He drove her to a rural area near Otay Lakes, choked her unconscious and dumped her by a roadside, she said.
The task force added her assault case to their list of unsolved killings because of its similarity. Many victims, most of them prostitutes or transients, were strangled and their bodies dumped in remote areas countywide since January, 1985.
Authorities say the Green River killings apparently ended in March, 1984. The killer is officially blamed for the slayings of 40 young women in Washington and Oregon, and for the disappearance of eight other victims.
San Diego investigators have said that several of the 40 San Diego slayings may be linked. With varying degrees of certainty, San Diego and Seattle task force investigators have said the two cases could be linked.
Many Green River victims were also prostitutes and transients, and many also were strangled.
A Southern California drifter, Alan Michael Stevens, has been charged in one of the San Diego task force killings and is awaiting a Feb. 14 preliminary hearing.
He is accused of murdering Cynthia Lou McVey, 26, of Livermore, Calif. Task force members reportedly have linked him to three other victims whose bodies were dumped in the same general area of northern San Diego County.
Stevens has been ruled out as a suspect in the Green River slayings, officials there have said.