Sunday, 10 January 2016

77.Rory Enrique CONDE

A.K.A.: "The Tamiami Trail Strangler"

Classification: Serial killer
Characteristics: Sex anal with corpses - Blamed his split from his wife Carla as the catalyst for the killings
Number of victims: 6
Date of murders: 1994 - 1995
Date of arrest: June 26, 1995
Date of birth: June 14, 1965
Victims profile: Lazaro Comesana (cross dressing male prostitute) / Rhonda Dunn, 21, Elisa Martinez, Charity Fay Nava, Wanda Cook Crawford and Necole Schneider (prostitutes)
Method of murder: Strangulation
Location: Tamiami, Florida, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on March 7, 2000. Pleaded guilty to the murder of five others and was sentenced to five consecutive life terms without parole on April 5, 2001

Fla. Killer Sentenced to Die in Serial Case
Judge Issues Death Penalty to 'Tamiami Trail Strangler'
March 7, 2000
MIAMI (APBnews.com) -- A judge today sentenced to death accused serial killer Rory Conde, the "Tamiami Trail Strangler" who has allegedly killed six prostitutes since 1994, authorities said.
Judge Jerald Bagley issued the death penalty to Conde during a 9:30 a.m. hearing today after Conde's conviction nearly four months ago in one of the slayings, the 1995 murder of 21-year-old Rhonda Dunn.
Lawyers for Conde, a married, 34-year-old building-supply salesman, had argued that he should be spared death because the killing spree was the result of sexual abuse he suffered as a child at the hands of his uncle.
Defense lawyer: 'His life fell apart'
In a court filing, the attorneys said the spree started Sept. 17, 1994, when Conde encountered cross-dressing male prostitute Lazaro Comesana. Conde's shock at discovering that Comesana was man during their sexual encounter was such that he flashed back to the abuse he suffered between ages 6 and 12, the lawyers said.
"His life fell apart when he went to a prostitute who turned out to be a man," defense lawyer Jeffrey Fink said. "In a very real sense, he was put on a track when he was abused as a child that was impossible for him to turn away from anymore."
Bagley issued the death sentence without comment at the hearing today. Assistant State Attorney Abraham Laeser, who tried the case, declined comment.
Alleged six-month spree
Conde was found guilty in October of Dunn's murder, the only one of six alleged slayings for which he has been tried.
The killing spree, which allegedly began in September 1994, lasted roughly six months. In addition to Dunn, who traded sex for drugs in the Tamiami Trail area, and Comesana, other alleged victims included Elisa Martinez, Charity Fay Nava, Wanda Cook Crawford and Necole Schneider.
The alleged series of slayings was discovered when neighbors heard banging on the walls from inside Conde's apartment and called police, who found a woman there bound and gagged with duct tape.
An appeal of the ruling automatically will be filed for Conde. No decision has yet been made on when or if he will be tried for the other deaths.

Rory Conde
April 5, 2001 - Miami's "Tamiami Strangler" who was sentenced to death for killing a prostitute pleaded guilty to the murder of five others as part of a plea agreement. Rory Conde agreed to the plea agreement and was sentenced by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Jerald Bagley to five consecutive life terms without parole.

Rory CONDE
The Tamiami trail is the nickname given to the final section of Highway 41 from Tampa through to Miami. It was also the dumping ground of Rory Conde, given the moniker of the Tamiami Strangler.
Six victims were slain by the hands of the recently separated Conde, the first being cross dressing male prostitute Lazaro Comesana. His body was found on September 16th 1994, he had been strangled to death and dumped at the roadside. Elisa Martinez was identified as victim number 2 after she was also found strangled to death on October 8th 1994.
Victim number 3, Charity Nava, was found dead again just off the trail on November 20th 1994, as with the other victims she had been strangled. Charity’s killer had left his mark on her back, he had written several taunting phrases including ‘Third’ and ‘if you can catch me’. Wanda Crawford was added to the list after being recovered on November 26th 1994. The fifth victim was identified as Necole Schneider, the sixth Rhonda Dunn, both were found strangled on December 17th 1994 and January 12th 1995 respectively. After Rhonda’s discovery Miami police had connected the six victims to one unknown suspect via DNA analysis.
The case took a dramatic turn when on June 19th 1995, frantic banging could be heard from a house belonging to Rory Conde. Inside officers found the gagged and bound Gloria Maestre. Gloria pointed out her attacker via photos found in the house. Conde was arrested on June 24th 1995 at his Grandmother’s house in Hialeah.
During questioning, Conde confessed to the six murders and blamed his split from his wife Carla as the catalyst for the killings. He explained that he killed Lazaro after discovering, during sex, that the prostitute was a man. In each of the six murders, Conde strangled his victim from behind at his house, then performed anal sex on the dead body before dumping their bodies on the Tamiami Trail. On July 12th 1995, Conde was charged with 6 counts of first degree murder.
Conde faced separate trials for each murder, the first of which would be for the murder of Rhonda Dunn. In October 1999, the jury heard Conde’s confession and found him guilty. Judge Jerald Bagley concurred with the jury’s recommendation and sentenced Conde to death.
In April 2001, as part of a plea bargain, Conde pleaded guilty to the remaining five murders, in return he was sentenced to 5 consecutive life sentences. Conde would return to court on September 4th 2003 to find that he had failed to get his death sentence, for the murder of Rhonda Dunn, overturned.

CONDE, Rory (W/M)
DC# M25274
DOB: 06/14/65
Eleventh Judicial Circuit, Dade County Case # 95-19816
Sentencing Judge: The Honorable Jerald Bagley
Attorney, Trial: Jeffrey Fink & J. Rafael Rodriguez – Special Assistant Public Defenders
Attorney, Direct Appeal: Benjamin Waxman – Special Assistant Public Defender
Attorney, Collateral Appeals: Gustavo Garcia-Montes – Registry
Date of Offense: 09/16/94 – 01/10/95
Date of Sentence: 03/07/00
Circumstances of Offense:
On 01/13/95, Rory Conde picked up a prostitute, Rhonda Dunn, and took her to his apartment. After twice engaging in sexual relations, Dunn got up to go to the bathroom. Conde followed her and began to manually strangle her from behind. Dunn and Conde struggled and fell to the floor, but Dunn eventually died from asphyxiation. Conde disposed of her body by driving it to another location and leaving it on the side of the road.
In June of 1995, fire rescue personnel found a woman, who was naked and bound in duct tape, trapped in an apartment. While investigating the kidnapping, police found evidence in the apartment that linked the tenant to the six prostitute murders. The apartment was rented by Conde, and he became a suspect in the murders. After his arrest, Conde consented to searches of his apartment and car and the taking of saliva and blood samples. The day after his arrest, Conde confessed to the murders. DNA evidence linked Conde to six murders.
The sequence of events in the Dunn murder occurred on five prior dates. On each occasion, Conde picked up prostitutes, engaged in sexual relations, strangled them, and disposed of the bodies.
The five previous victims (and date of death) are: Lazaro Comesana (09/16/94), Elisa Martinez (10/08/94), Charity Nava (11/20/94), Wanda Crawford (11/25/94), and Necole Schneider (12/17/94). Conde stated that after each murder, he knelt over the body and verbally blamed the victim for his marital problems. The murders were preceded by the break-up of his marriage. Conde also engaged in post-mortem sexual relations with each of the victims.
Trial Summary:
07/12/95 Indicted as follows:
Count I: First-Degree Murder (Lomensana)
Count II: First-Degree Murder (Martinez)
Count III: First-Degree Murder (Nava)
Count IV: First-Degree Murder (Crawford)
Count V: First-Degree Murder (Schneider)
Count VI: First-Degree Murder (Dunn)
07/26/95 Count VI severed from the other counts of the indictment
10/19/99 Jury returned a guilty verdict on Count VI of the indictment
12/14/99 Jury recommended death by a vote of 9-3
03/07/00 Sentenced as follows:
Count VI: First-Degree Murder (Dunn) – Death
04/03/01 Sentenced as follows:
Count I: First-Degree Murder (Lomensana) – Life
Count II: First-Degree Murder (Martinez) – Life
Count III: First-Degree Murder (Nava) – Life
Count IV: First-Degree Murder (Crawford) – Life
Count V: First-Degree Murder (Schneider) – Life
Case Information:
Conde filed a Direct Appeal with the Florida Supreme Court on 04/10/00, citing the following errors: denying challenges to six jurors; granting the State’s motion to strike a prospective juror; denying a motion for judgment of acquittal; admitting evidence of the prior murders; admitting testimony of collateral crimes, admitting evidence of police warnings to Dunn about a series of murders and Conde’s flight at the time of arrest; failing to limit prosecutorial comments during opening and closing arguments; denying a motion to suppress a confession; finding the aggravating circumstances; failing to find mitigating circumstances; admitting evidence about prior violent felonies; excluding mitigation testimony on the basis of a discovery violation; lacking proportionality regarding the death sentence; and Florida’s unconstitutional death penalty statute. On 09/04/03, the court affirmed the convictions and sentences.
Conde filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court on 02/02/04 that was denied on 04/05/04.
Conde filed a 3.851 Motion with the Circuit Court on 03/24/05 that is pending.