A jury on Monday found a Sepulveda man guilty of first-degree murder, attempted murder and five counts of robbery stemming from a crime rampage by three men in the San Fernando Valley and Hollywood over the course of one night in 1982.
After deliberating more than a week, the San Fernando Superior Court jury found J. D. Adams Jr., 25, guilty of fatally stabbing Kenneth Holbrook and seriously injuring his wife, Clyda, on July 22, 1982, in the Sylmar motel they managed.
Because Adams was convicted of committing the murder during another felony--a robbery--he could be sentenced to death in the penalty phase of his trial, set to begin Oct. 15.
Adams was also found guilty of robbing three women outside a Sherman Oaks restaurant and robbing a man outside a Hollywood supermarket.
However, the jury could not reach a verdict on one robbery and one murder count stemming from the fatal stabbing of Joseph Gulvas on a Hollywood street the same night.
Judge John H. Major declared a mistrial on those charges.
Two weeks ago, a different jury delivered a similar verdict in the case of Chester Longmire, 26, who admitted being the driver during the crimes but said he didn't know his colleagues were robbing and attacking people.
Longmire was convicted of the murder of Holbrook, 51, but the jury deadlocked on counts relating to the killing of Gulvas.
Deputy Dist. Atty. Fredrick Steward said he has not yet decided whether to retry Adams and Longmire on those charges.
The third defendant, James E. Jennings, 24, pleaded guilty to both murders and the robberies and testified against Adams and Longmire. Jennings said he participated in the robberies but left Adams alone with all the victims before they were stabbed.
Adams testified that he took part in the robbery of the Motel 6 in Sylmar, but that he left Jennings alone with the Holbrooks before they were stabbed. Adams denied having anything to do with the Gulvas stabbing.
But Clyda Holbrook, who was hospitalized 10 weeks with injuries to her lung and liver, testified that Adams stabbed her and her husband.
Prosecutors did not seek the death penalty against Jennings and Longmire.