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Accused Serial Killer Tells of More Sex Trysts, Police Say

Crime: Admission sparks concern there may be slaying victims beyond the four that the trucker reportedly has confessed to.

November 11, 1998|TOM GORMAN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Long-haul trucker Wayne Adam Ford, who allegedly confessed to killing four women over the past year, told authorities that he picked up at least five other women in Bakersfield since February for sex--but that each was alive when they got out of the cab of his truck, an investigator said Tuesday.

Three of the women simply got out of his cab and walked away, but Ford said he had to lift two women down from his truck because they were still bound, said Kern County Sheriff's Det. Ron Taylor.

Both were still alive and breathing when he drove off, Taylor said Ford told him.

Ford's admissions of picking up other women, beyond the four to whom he has admitted killing, have sparked concern there may be other, still unknown victims, Taylor said.

It was while Kern County detectives were interviewing Ford about possible cases in their jurisdiction, Taylor said, that the trucker acknowledged that he had picked up five prostitutes near the same Bakersfield truck stop. Each was advertising her services to truckers on a CB radio, Taylor said.

"He described having 'rough sex' with some of them, and a little bit of bondage, where he was tying them up," Taylor said. "There were no weapons."

Kern County authorities were questioning Ford specifically about the death of Tina Renee Gibbs, 26, whose body was found in June in the California Aqueduct near the Kern County farm town of Buttonwillow.

Ford said he picked up Gibbs in Las Vegas, had sex with her, but could not remember the details of her death, Taylor said. "He still doesn't know where she was killed," the detective said. "He said they had sex, and remembers going to his next [load] pickup on the coast, but doesn't remember when he put her in the aqueduct.

"It's like, he can tell us things leading up to, and things after, but he can't tell us what happened to cause the death," Taylor said. "He kept telling us, 'I don't know what happened. We were having sex and the next thing I knew, she died.' He said that, over and over."

Taylor said he would ask the Kern County district attorney's office today to file murder charges against Ford for the death of Gibbs.

Of the five women that Ford remembered picking up at the Bakersfield truck stop, one victim was later identified as a 22-year-old prostitute from Santa Rosa, who identified Ford from a photo lineup on Sunday.

Taylor said he hopes to track down the other four women--or any others who may have been picked up by Ford. Of the two he lifted out of his cab, tied up, one was left near Tehachapi and another close to a service station near California 46 and Interstate 5, both in Kern County.

Sheriff's deputies in those areas had not fielded any complaints from such a run-in with a trucker, Taylor said. "But that wouldn't be unusual, for a truck-stop prostitute to not report something," he said.

Ford is being held in Humboldt County Jail in connection with the death of an unidentified woman whose headless torso was found outside Eureka last October.

He also has confessed to the killings of Lanett White, a 25-year-old Fontana woman whose body was found in an irrigation ditch near Lodi in September, and Patricia Anne Tamez, 29, of Victorville, whose body was found in the California Aqueduct near Hesperia on Oct. 23.

Ford turned himself in to authorities Nov. 3, saying he was remorseful about the killings.

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