A Tujunga laborer was sentenced to 144 years and four months in prison Friday for attacking a Tujunga couple, leading to his conviction for sexual assault, assault with a deadly weapon and attempted murder.
San Fernando Superior Court Judge John H. Major sentenced Donald Garrett Taylor, 36, to the maximum of 112 years for eight counts of rape and oral copulation, and 17 years and four months on four counts of assault with a deadly weapon and attempted murder. Major added 15 years based on Taylor's past convictions.
According to court records, Taylor has a 25-year history of convictions for theft, burglaries and violent sexual assaults, but never served more than three years in prison at a time.
Attacked in Apartment
During a six-day trial that ended March 7, Rebecca Delaney testified that Taylor terrorized her and a boyfriend, Stephen Hinson, in their Tujunga apartment on the morning of Sept. 3, 1984.
Delaney said Taylor broke in through a window and, threatening the couple with a knife, ordered Hinson to lie face down on their bed. Taylor then raped Delaney twice and forced her to commit oral copulation, she said.
Delaney testified that she finally forced Taylor off the bed, but he then threatened to kill the couple's 8-month-old son. When she tried to protect the baby, Taylor slashed her abdomen, inflicting a wound that exposed her intestines.
Hinson then tried to intervene, she said, but was stabbed in the chest.
Delaney said she finally chased Taylor out of the apartment by hitting him with a portable radio.
Police arrested Taylor about 6:30 that morning by tracing an identification card found in a truck parked outside the couple's apartment to his home less than a mile away.
A probation report prepared for his sentencing showed a criminal record dating back to when Taylor was 10.
2 Terms as Youth
The report said Taylor twice served time in the California Youth Authority, once in 1965 for glue inhalation and soliciting a lewd act, and again in 1967 for prowling, rape and theft.
In 1969, as an adult, Taylor pleaded guilty to prowling and was released on a suspended sentence, the report said. Two months later, he was convicted of rape and committed to Atascadero State Hospital. The report said he was released in 1972 with the comment that he had improved.
Taylor was next fined and placed on probation for a 1974 burglary conviction, the report said.
In 1975, Taylor was sentenced to three years to life in prison after he was convicted of raping two women and attempting to rape a 14-year-old girl, the report said. Taylor used a steak knife to coerce the victims. He was paroled in 1978.
That same year, according to the report, Taylor was convicted of assault to commit rape and was sent to Patton State Hospital. He was treated as a sex offender who suffered from a mental disorder, but was discharged early in 1979. It was noted at the time of his discharge that Taylor was still considered dangerous but would "not benefit from further treatment," the report said.
Taylor subsequently served six months in prison to complete his sentence, Deputy Dist. Atty. John Spillane said.
At Taylor's sentencing Friday, Spillane argued for the maximum sentence as a guarantee that Taylor would never be free again.
Taylor will not be eligible for parole for about 96 years.