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SoCal Serial Killer Alcala Suspected In 1977 SF Cold Case
At left, police sketch of the mystery photographer who met Pam Lambson at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco in October 1977, drawn from the memory of a store clerk and at right, Photograph of serial killer Rodney Alcala, taken in the mid 1970s.(COURTESY OF HUNTINGTON BEACH POLICE DEPARTMENT)
Condemned to death last year by an Orange County jury for five sexual assault slayings in the 1970s including a 12-year-old Huntington Beach girl, serial killer Rodney Alcala is now the primary suspect in a 34 year old unsolved murder of a 19-year-old woman in the Bay Area.
Charged also this year with two New York cold-case murders, Alcala "is suspected of the sexual assault, torture and strangulation of Pamela Jean Lambson, a computer assistant and aspiring actress and singer who disappeared from Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco on Oct. 8, 1977 after she went to pose for a freelance photographer," reports the OC Register. "Her nude, bruised and battered body found the next day" on a Mount Tamalpais trail a few miles from where Alcala now waits on death row at San Quentin Prison.However, despite Marin County officials being "absolutely certain" Rodney Alcala is responsible for the murder of Pam Lambson, he will will not be charged in her death due to disintegrated DNA evidence deemed not viable for testing and comparison with the Orange County lab.
After trying for more than 30 years to identify the pony-tailed photographer who met Lambson that day in 1977, Marin County Sheriff's detectives saw a television program, one year ago this week, about the catalogue of photographs of young women recovered by Huntington Beach police from a Seattle storage locker was rented by Alcala in 1979, notes the OC Register.
Lambson was not among the 100+ photos found and posted online, however detectives followed up with Huntington Beach Police to discuss similarities in the cases, Alcala's method of operation and compare suspect sketches and mug shots.