Ex-Deputy Is Convicted in Supermarket Slaying
A jury deliberated less than 90 minutes before finding a former Los Angeles sheriff’s deputy guilty Friday of a 1994 crime spree that ended with the murder of a Yorba Linda supermarket manager.
Jurors will return to court Wednesday to decide if Stephen Moreland Redd, a fugitive for eight months before his arrest last year, should be sentenced to death for fatally shooting 35-year-old Timothy Eugene McVeigh during a robbery at an Alpha Beta store.
The 50-year-old ex-convict contended during the trial’s one-week guilt phase that he never intended to kill the manager, that his gun fired accidentally during a struggle.
Prosecutors and police described Redd as a clever criminal and a master of disguise who would do anything to avoid capture.
“This guy is as cold as you get,” Deputy Dist. Atty. Lewis Rosenblum told jurors Thursday as the guilt phase closed without any defense witnesses being called.
Redd, a Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy from 1967 to 1973, has spent most of the years since then committing crimes and serving time.
In 1982, Redd shot a La Habra police officer in the leg after robbing a Security Pacific Bank branch and was arrested after a three-county chase.
He was sentenced to 18 years in prison for a series of bank robberies committed that fall.
In 1986, he tried to climb over a fence at the California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo County and was shot in the arm by prison guards. A year and four months was added to his sentence.
He was paroled after 11 years in prison in April 1993. He was a self-employed construction worker, living in Fullerton and undergoing psychiatric counseling.
By June 1994, Redd was wanted by police in connection with the shooting and wounding of a security guard in the parking lot of a Vons market in Orange.
Then on July 18, 1994, McVeigh was shot and killed at close range during the late-night hold-up at the Alpha Beta market in Yorba Linda.
After a nationwide manhunt, Redd was arrested March 6, 1995, by a U.S. Park Police detective in San Francisco. The trunk of his car was found loaded with semiautomatic weapons and ammunition, body armor, grenades and a grenade launcher, wigs, knit hats and gloves. The murder weapon, a chrome-plated semiautomatic gun was also in the trunk.
In addition to first-degree murder, the jury found Redd guilty of burglary, robbery and attempted murder stemming from the shooting at the Vons, and a holdup at a Sav-On in the same shopping complex a month earlier.
The verdict included findings that the murder occurred during a burglary and a robbery, making Redd eligible for a death penalty or life in prison without parole.
Defense attorneys could not be reached for comment Friday. The penalty phase is expected to last through November.
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