'Baseline Killer' Suspect Convicted
Saturday, September 8, 2007; 3:52 AM
PHOENIX -- After two months of testimony, jurors needed only three hours of deliberations to convict the city's suspected "Baseline Killer" of a pair of 2005 sexual attacks. The reason: biological evidence linking the accused serial predator to the crime scene.
"It left little doubt in everyone's mind," jury foreman Michael Voda said Friday. "The DNA was really a lynchpin to the case. It was pretty much irrefutable."
Prosecutors called four DNA experts to testify in their case against Mark Goudeau, a 43-year-old former construction worker.
The jury convicted Goudeau on 19 charges stemming from an attack on two sisters near a south Phoenix park. He still faces trial on 74 other criminal charges, including nine murder counts, from a crime spree police have attributed to the Baseline Killer, named for the south Phoenix street where many of the attacks took place.
Goudeau stared straight ahead as the bailiff read the verdict. Juror Lauren Bohacik of Avondale said she was struck by Goudeau's stoic demeanor during the trial.
"Cold and distant," she said. "There really was no emotion."
As authorities ushered Goudeau out of the courtroom, he gave his lawyers a conciliatory slap on the shoulder and said "I love you" to his sobbing wife.
Goudeau's wife, Wendy Carr, refused to comment to reporters as she hurried out of the courtroom. The victims wiped tears from their eyes.
Though Goudeau faces essentially a life sentence of 70 to 285 years in prison, Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas vowed to continue to pursue the rest of the charges. If Goudeau is convicted of murder, Thomas said he'll seek the death penalty.
Goudeau is scheduled to be sentenced Nov. 6.
Defense attorney Corwin Townsend said he planned to appeal. "I don't believe they (the jury) deliberated at all, not at all," he said. "The judge's instruction was to go to the evidence before you deliberate. That obviously didn't happen."
During the two-month trial, the sisters testified that Goudeau rushed toward them with a pistol in hand as they left a south Phoenix park. They said he forced them into some bushes, told them to strip, then had sex with the younger sister while pointing the gun at the other sister's pregnant belly.
"I wanted to get up but I thought if I got up he would hurt my sister," the younger of the two sisters testified through a Spanish interpreter.
It took a year to track Goudeau down, prosecutors said, because he took extra steps to conceal his identity.
The conviction was the first victory for county prosecutors, who have been dealing with numerous serial killer cases for more than a year.
Two other suspected serial killers, Dale Hausner and Samuel Dieteman, also face murder charges in separate cases. Police have dubbed them the "Serial Shooters," and accuse them of randomly blasting at people with shotguns between 2005 and 2006. Both men have pleaded not guilty.
Hausner and Dieteman's murder trials are expected to begin in 2008. Goudeau's trial on the other criminal counts has not yet been scheduled. He has pleaded not guilty in the case.
Associated Press writer Terry Tang contributed to this story.