Was O.J. Innocent?
There were other items of evidence against him as well, not the least of which was his "suicide drive" down the highway, complete with a passport and thousands of dollars.� Circumstances and some of the best possible evidence were against him.� Nevertheless, the defense team managed to refocus the jury's attention on corruption in the Los Angeles Police Department, rampant racism from the lead detective, ands the possibility that evidence had been planted to frame Simpson.� His experts also showed that the crime lab had mishandled evidence, placing everything into doubt.�
The jury briefly deliberated and then acquitted Simpson.� He vowed to search for Nicole's killer, and as a matter of fact, another possible suspect did emerge not long afterward.� He was angry, brutal, and quite vicious in the random murders he committed, and he always targeted beautiful women.� He started in California, at least from what was known at the time.� O.J. Simpson's trial was still in process when Glen Rogers became a murder suspect in a different incident not far away.
The primary sources for this story are two books, Clifford Linedecker's "Smooth Operator" and a book told to Joyce Spizer by Rogers' brother, Claude Rogers, Jr., "The Cross Country Killer."� In addition, several major newspapers carried it.� Often, the details conflict, but what follows is the essence of Rogers' activities.
The Lottery Winner
That evening, Rogers had been looking for attention, as usual from the bartender, telling her he needed a ride back to his place that day.� Linedecker writes that she initially agreed to it, but then had a bad feeling, so she changed her mind.� That made Rogers mad, and he allegedly told her, "I always get what I want."� She would tell this story many times to the press in the days that followed.
Rogers then made overtures to Gallagher, who initially declined to give him a ride, but she, too, changed her mind. Apparently she was feeling charitable that day, thanks to her recent good luck.� She left the bar with Rogers, assuring Keener that she felt safe because she "knew" him possibly believing that his association with the bar made him safe.� Why would a man whom everyone saw with her try to harm her?
The next morning, Gallagher's badly charred body was found in her incinerated truck, although it took four more days to positively identify her, and the autopsy showed that she had been raped and strangled.� But Rogers, once a regular at the bar, was nowhere to be found.� He'd also left his digs, where police found a woman's earring that had belonged to the victim.� Someone later reported that an acquaintance of his said that Rogers had referred to this murder as the "eighth time."�
But Rogers had boarded a bus (or purchased a truck) and he was gone.� The police had a difficult time tracking him, which proved unfortunate for at least three more women.� But another murder had also drawn police attention to Rogers, and this victim was a man.
Leaving the Scene
Officials in Kentucky searched the cabin and on January 10, 1994, found a skeleton, bound to a chair beneath a pile of furniture.� Due to the state of the remains, official were unable to ascertain the cause of death.� However, it looked like anything but an accident.� They started the process of establishing the identity and only after two months of painstaking effort by technicians and anthropologists were they able to say that the remains were those of Mark Peters.
Before that occurred, Glen had been arrested in California and charged with assaulting a female, and the ID he showed the police there was that of James Peters, Mark's son.� It was an early case of identity theft, wherein Rogers had used the social security card to get a California driver's license and had run up considerable bills that were sent to Mark Peters.� So much for repaying an old man's kindness.� His family was left bereft.
While the police tried to find him, he proved elusive, giving him time to kill again and then flee to another state.
Going SouthApparently, Rogers went straight to Jackson, Mississippi, from California and settled among the residents there.� He had no idea that a federal warrant had been issued for his arrest: He was wanted by the FBI.� He contacted a friend for money but stayed away from places where he was known.
Her brother warned her that Rogers was no good, but she ignored him.� Having been through a rough time with men, she liked the way he was treating her.� Besides, she was lonely and it was nice to have some company.� She stayed in touch with her mother, assuring her that she was happy.
On November 3, after her family became concerned that they had not heard from her, they sent the police to check her apartment.� Officers discovered Linda sprawled naked in the bathtub, stabbed to death.� She was lying face-down, and there were four vicious stab wounds to her back and chest.� In addition, her throat had been slashed.� The pathologist estimated that Linda had been dead from two to four days, although it was difficult from the state of her remains to pin down an exact time.� Her red Datsun pick-up was missing, as was her purse and some jewelry.� So was her new boyfriend.� In fact, he'd been pretty thorough about erasing his presence.� He'd showered the body to wash away the blood, and perhaps any trace evidence that could connect him, and had cleaned the apartment of his fingerprints.
Oddly, a message written in lipstick on the mirror seemed to throw the blame on someone else: "Glen, we found you," it said, as if someone had been looking for him and he'd hightailed it out of there before they arrived, so they'd killed Linda instead.� It was a fairly transparent ploy, and no one believed that anyone but Glen Rogers had killed her.� When the police put his name into the computer for the FBI's national crime database, they turned up the arrest warrant from Van Nuys.� Now they knew they had a killer, and perhaps even a serial killer.
Again, Rogers boarded a bus and went to Louisiana, where he met Andy Jiles (or Lou) Sutton, 37, in a bar in the Shreveport suburb, Bossier City. He left with Sutton and managed to persuade her to let him stay with her.� But before he did, in an inexplicable side trip, he took a bus to Tampa, Florida. He'd be back, driving a car that he hadn't had before, but Andy would never know from whom he had stolen it.
According to witnesses, Rogers began to flirt with the women, giving out two different names (neither of which was Glen), and because he was handsome and in good physical shape, they enjoyed his attention.� He danced with them and they were happy to have him buy them drinks.� He talked about his life as a carnie, hawking food and tearing down rides.� Then he said he needed a ride back to where he was staying for the winter.� His familiarity with their area put the women at ease.� He wasn't a stranger at all; he was one of them.� Cindy Torgerson would later say, "He was picking us out, like oranges."
He persuaded Cribbs to give him a ride and apparently talked her into coming into his motel with him (or forced her).� In fact, before she left, she'd ordered a drink, expecting to return within five or ten minutes, but she never showed up.� Her worried mother, set to meet her at the bar, paged her and then filed a missing persons report.� People saw them together, so Rogers was an obvious suspect when her body was found two days later.� She lay facedown in a blood-splashed bathtub in room 119 at the Tampa 8 Inn, stabbed and slashed in numerous places, front and back.� Her body appeared to have been washed clean of blood.� Her purse, a gold watch, and a diamond ring were missing.
Witnesses said they had seen Rogers leave the hotel in a car that was identified as Tina's.� He'd left a "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door and had requested that no one clean his room, giving himself some time to escape.� Oddly enough, he had signed his own name to the hotel register.� Apparently Rogers then called a relative in Ohio and said he'd killed someone.� He also said there would be more.� By then, he was back in Louisiana.
The Body Count Grows
By this time, Rogers was back with redheaded Andy Sutton, dancing and drinking in a bar.� She had missed him and was glad to have him back.� Everyone was impressed with how nice Rogers appeared to be, and he certainly treated Andy well.� They went from one bar to another, where Andy was known, before ending up back at her apartment above a Mormon church.� Andy had a roommate, but she was out.� Even when she did come in late that night, she didn't disturb them.� If she had, she might have found Andy's body much earlier.
The following day, Nov. 9, the roommate found Andy stabbed to death on the punctured waterbed.� The weapon had been large, leaving jagged wounds in her chest and a lot of blood, soaked into the blankets and sheets.� Water from the bed had leaked all over the floor.� When the body was transported for autopsy, six more stab wounds were found in her back.� Rogers had apparently been angry.
He'd also been quiet, because he'd managed to accomplish the killing, as well as some petty theft, while the roommate was sleeping on the couch.� She knew that he had been there because her purse was missing.
Rogers was seen that morning, placing items in a white Ford Festiva outside Sutton's home.� The car had belonged to Tina Marie Cribbs.� He left behind the red Datsun pickup that he'd stolen in Mississippi.� Rogers was immediately named as a suspect, wanted in connection with this murder, and Louisiana joined California, Ohio, Florida and Mississippi in an urgent search.� Where he was heading at that moment was anyone's guess, but he was clearly dangerous.
The description of Rogers placed in newspapers noted his penchant for women with red hair whom he met in country music bars.� He was considered a smooth talker who lied easily and could persuade women to do whatever he wanted.� And he wasn't being particularly secretive.� He'd signed his own name at one hotel, and had told a bar-hopping acquaintance that he had committed murder.� In fact, while he was on the run, he'd gone into several bars, showing his face as if he hadn't a care in the world, even drawing attention to himself by flashing money and buying everyone drinks.� He seemed to know his days were numbered, and until he was caught, he was just doing whatever he wanted.� Or else he had no awareness of the visibility of the trail he had left behind.
Agents knew that Rogers had two teenage sons living in Houston, Texas, and although a court order had barred him from seeing them, they thought he might be headed there.� He might also head to Canada, where his grandmother lived. "America's Most Wanted" rushed its program to the screen.� Flashing photographs and providing all known information to that point, the host, John Walsh, asked anyone who may have seen this dangerous fugitive to call the hotline.� More than 400 people called, but no one provided a viable lead.
Rogers' relatives, alert to the situation, went onto news shows to urge him to turn himself in.� As quoted in the Austin American Statesman, his mother, Edna Rogers, went on a Cincinnati-based television program and said, "Glen, babe, if you hear this, please give up.� Please.� I love you."� She admitted to police that he had phoned her to tell her he was wanted and had assured her that he'd done nothing wrong; she believed him.� But she did not want him to be shot while on the run, so she had sent out the appeal.
Spree vs. SerialEven as interest surrounded Rogers, a debate emerged as to whether he would be considered a serial killer or spree murderer, in the event he was convicted of all of the crimes with which he'd be charged. �But murderers generally don't think about such categories when they act.� They just act, so it's not always easy to pigeonhole them.
According to the FBI's Crime Classification Manual, which many law enforcement agencies acknowledge, there are three basic categories of multiple murder: mass, spree and serial.� The first involves a single extreme incident and the other two multiple incidents, but with different manifestations.�
The distinction between a long spree and a series of murders attributed to a serial killer seems to rest heavily on method and motive.� Serial killing is most often either a profitable crime, a crime for thrill and self-gratification, or a lust-driven crime where the killer may operate compulsively within an erotic ritual.� Occasionally, it's about revenge.� Spree killing, on the other hand, appears to be motivated by continuing and identifiable stress, taking place in several locales, and across a relatively short period.
If we examine Rogers' crimes and motives, it seems that he killed both for financial gain and his own satisfaction or relief (assuming his murders were triggered by anger).� That he was sloppy in allowing people to see him with all of his victims may have truncated his killing spree, speeding it up with the stress factor of realizing that he would probably be caught or killed.� Thus, he could be classified as either a serial or spree killer.� Neither category is incorrect.� In fact, he might be similar to the Beltway snipers, John Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, who started out with sporadic kills and then went on a spree for three weeks in October 2002.�
On the RunRogers hid out where he could, using James Peters as an alias and stealing a license plate in Tennessee to put on the stolen car.� But he was moving inevitably toward home, where he felt safe, despite part of him knowing the police would be looking for him there.� They dubbed him the "cross country killer."
On Nov. 13, 1995, Rogers visited two elderly cousins in Waco, Kentucky, not far from Beattyville, to ask for money.� He was driving the white Ford Festiva.� They urged him to turn himself in, but he wept and said he was confused. He may have told his siblings at this time that he had committed murder.� In any event, after he asked them to pray for him and drove away, an anonymous call was placed to the police to alert them to his recent whereabouts.� Later, it turned out that Edith Smallwood, his cousin, had turned him in.� "I love Glen, and it hurt," she told the Lexington Herald-Ledger, "but he had to be stopped."
He screeched out of there, taking off before the cop could get out and make an arrest.� But Stephens was hard on Rogers' heels, calling for back-up even as he accelerated.� Soon half a dozen police cars had joined the chase.�
The media frenzy was on.� Rogers' sister, Sue, agreed to be interviewed for a popular television tabloid show, "A Current Affair,"saying that Rogers had admitted to having killed 55 people.� He frightened her.� Although Rogers claimed he had killed no one, he was about to change his story.
Shocking ConfessionOnce caught, Rogers began to confess.� One officer told reporters he was "talking his head off," and he apparently went on for four hours.� His interrogators, Stephens and Detective Floyd McIntosh, found him personable and "smooth," and they could see how he used his silver tongue to lure women to trust him.� When they told him they were interested in him for five murders, he laughed and told them it was more like 70.� This statement made its way to the press, and soon Rogers was being touted as the country's most prolific serial killer.� Police departments with unsolved murders in more than two hundred jurisdictions where he was thought to have traveled or resided started to look at their cases more closely.�
Given his time with carnivals, he could easily have killed in many places and then quietly left town.� Several investigations were reopened, especially in those states were he had allegedly killed.� From tips, police did a few excavations in search of more bodies.� Even male victims were considered, given the Mark Peters murder.� It looked as if Rogers killed as much for gain as for some type of sexual or emotional release.
Clay Rogers added to the search, according to Linedecker, when he said to a television interviewer that there was a hidden cemetery full of victims on the family farm.� It had been used for at least a quarter of a century.� But nothing came of that "tip," either.��
Rogers clearly loved the attention, although he eventually asked for an attorney and stopped talking.� Apparently he didn't care for the pressure to provide details about the victims the police actually knew about.� In these particular cases, he did not offer a confession.
Rogers was being held on minor charges, including first-degree wanton endangerment, but this time, he was not going to be cut loose.� In prison, he began selling locks of his blond hair and beard to the eager buyers that always emerge in such cases, as well as autographed index cards.� These fetched $30 apiece.� He became a favorite of adoring young girls, who would flock to his hearings and trials. A Web site devoted to serial killers kept a daily log (this was before blogs existed).
It wasn't long, however, before Rogers recanted his confession and claimed that he hadn't killed anyone: He was entirely innocent.� He said he'd just been joking about 70 bodies.� Regarding the alleged crimes, he said he'd just happened to have been with the wrong women at the wrong time.� It was all an unfortunate coincidence, and that made him a victim as well.� This theme would play out for the years that his case stretched out, and once his brother described his background in a book, the source of Rogers' violence, as well as for his eventual attempts to frame others for the crimes, was clarified.
A Killer's LifeAs is often the case with such men, people were curious as to how Rogers could have become a multiple murderer.� We'll start from the beginning.� Rogers was born and raised in Hamilton, Ohio, a southwestern town near the Erie Canal.� Linedecker provides details about his early family life, as does Spizer, in her "as-told-to" account from Claude, Jr., 13 years his senior.
Perhaps just as important was the day Glen got into trouble in school, and Edna came in to find out who had victimized him.� Blaming others was an attitude she modeled, which Rogers picked up on and carried into all of his crimes: He was not responsible, someone else was.� Nevertheless, by age 11, he was in reform school.
Problems with WomenRogers dropped out of high school and married a woman named Debbie, with whom he had two sons, and he tattooed Debbie's name onto the top of his right hand.� At the time, Rogers worked as a cab driver for Ohio Taxi.� In Hamilton, he built up quite a police record, from assault to driving infractions to forgery and arson.� He even once threatened the police with a blowtorch, which got him three months in jail.� He had a short temper, and beat up his wife on several occasions. That marriage ended.� Debbie got a court order barring him from her and the boys, and eventually she moved to Texas.
Rogers married again to a woman named Paula, but she was a brunette, not a redhead.� He drove cabs and apparently took Ritalin, a stimulant.� Later in life, he worked his way across the country in traveling carnivals, primarily the Farrow Amusement and Charles companies.� In general, he set up and broke down rides, or hawked food, living hand to mouth.� He was a drifter, but also had reason to leave a number of places.� Spizer says, "The police recorded a total of 52 arrests, traffic stops, and citations against Glen Rogers between April 10, 1990 and October 12, 1993."
During one of his jail stints in the 1980s, Rogers was diagnosed with porphyria, an enzyme deficiency that causes a defect in the bone marrow that inhibits the oxygen-carrying blood cells.� Sufferers experience an extreme sensitivity to light.� Linedecker says that perhaps that's why darkened barrooms appealed to him.
(It should be noted that there's an odd tension in the book by Rogers and Spitzer; Claude seems to want to find excuses for his brother and even to exonerate him from the murders, but at the same time, one gets the impression that the more murders that can be attributed to Glen Rogers the better, which is possibly Spitzer's influence; certainly one of them hints that he may have committed some of the murders attributed to the Green River Killer and also makes a strong case that he murdered Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman.� However, some of the facts of these cases are stated in error.� In any event, the impression from reading this account of Rogers is a jarring sense of ambivalence about his status as a killer perhaps worse than we realize.)
Rogers seemed always to have trouble with women, brutalizing any with whom he got involved.� He was now going to pay the price for believing he could freely take out his rage on innocent victims, living or dead.� The states were he killed were seeking to bring him to trial.� But he was also eyed in another murder, in fact a double homicide, because O. J. Simpson, acquitted in a criminal trial for the murder of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman, was heading to the civil courtroom, sued by the victims' families for wrongful death.
Back to LASpizer takes great pains in "The Cross Country Killer" to support the notion that Rogers knew Nicole and possibly killed her.� Linedecker mentions the connection as well, but shows why it's a rather unlikely possibility.
Rogers had left Ohio for California in 1993, and was in the Los Angeles area in 1994.� He allegedly bragged to a drinking companion that he had killed at least eight times, so the five to which he has been definitively linked may not be his only victims (although some murders in which he was suspected proved to be solved in other ways).�
Rogers liked to slash and stab his victims, and the victims had been slashed and stabbed.� However, Rogers also liked to take credit for murders he did not commit.� Linedecker indicates there are more reasons to disregard Rogers as a suspect than to accept him.� Among them are the fact that the killer was probably stalking Nicole, and Rogers did not tend to be a stalker; Nicole had no red tint in her hair; O.J.'s blood and DNA linked him to the scene; no physical evidence links Rogers to the crimes; Rogers' MO was to leave the area after killing, but he didn't leave LA until 1995; and Rogers never used gloves.
The L.A. police found the suggestion that Rogers was the killer to be without substance, and Pavelic backpedaled by saying that he had checked out the tip about Rogers but had never said that the defense team would use it; in fact, he claimed that he'd never even told them about it (although they certainly knew about it from some source).� In addition, if there had been any good reason to believe that Rogers was a viable suspect, O.J.'s attorney in the civil suit would have raised it.� However, he made no mention of Rogers as a suspect.� In a later interview, Simpson himself dismissed the possibility.
Then it was learned that the source of the story about Rogers' confession failed a polygraph, and that revelation appeared to diminish confidence in the entire scheme.� The New York Daily News indicated that Simpson's attorneys had never intended to use the information about Rogers, viewing it as ludicrous.� However, Spizer, with Claude Rogers, Jr., has kept the story alive with counterarguments in her 2001 book.� Let's look at their side of the story.
Nicole's "Play-toy"Spizer indicates that Rogers met the former Mrs. Simpson when he was painting her house, and she invited him inside.� She may have wanted him as a new "toy" because she "was the original party girl."� (That story alone undermines the credibility of the rest, given how easily she could attract wealthy, accomplished men.)� Rogers apparently said he did not know who O.J. Simpson was.
They went to clubs together not long before she died, and there were photos taken of the two of them together the night before (not supplied in this book).� Rogers' brother Clay claimed he'd received a phone call in which Rogers claimed to be with Nicole at that very moment.� He supposedly said, "This lady is loaded and I'm gonna take her down."� He later claimed that they'd been dating but that she'd "dropped" him to go back to O.J. (another unlikely story).� O.J. came over that night and hugged her.� Then Rogers committed the double murder and let O.J. be arrested.
Spizer says a blond strand of hair was found beneath Nicole's body that was not hers and that some DNA found at the scene did not match O.J. or the victims.� (Although the defense team for O.J.'s civil trial did contact Rogers, they apparently never thought to see if the unidentified DNA matched.)� Spizer (and Claude Jr.) suggests that Rogers was with O.J. that night, helping him, although how he came to be a murderous companion of O.J.'s is never explained.
To bolster the argument, they indicate that a psychic told the police that a blond-haired serial killer was Nicole's murderer (but Rogers was not a serial killer until more than a year later, not to mention how unreliable psychic impressions are.) The arguments they offer about time frames work no better in this book than they worked for the defense team, and criminalist Henry Lee's supposed identification of a second shoe print turned out to be a misidentification.
In the end, while the Spizer/Rogers book adds a lot to our knowledge about Glen Rogers, it does not close the case on the Simpson/Goldman murders.
But other cases were about to be closed.
Rogers immediately protested his representation by the Public Defender's Office, claming they did not believe he was innocent and they were secretly conspiring to send him to the electric chair.� He wanted to represent himself.� They in turn claimed he was undermining their efforts by talking with the media.� The judge granted Rogers a private attorney, Nick Sinardi.� He soon suggested that Cribbs may have been killed by another man someone she was seen with after Rogers was with her.� In fact, the attempt to throw the blame on another man became something of a circus in itself.
A few weeks before the trial began in April 1997, Assistant DA Karen Cox from the Hillsborough State Attorney's Office ordered that Rogers' cell at the Morgan Street jail be thoroughly searched, along with the cells of three other inmates.� Cox had no warrant but nevertheless seized three boxes full of photographs and papers, as reported in the Tampa Tribune.� The materials removed from the cell were related to the Cribbs case, but officials from the DA's office declined to specify what they were.� They stated that to search a jail cell, no warrant was necessary.
Rogers called Sondra London, a groupie who had befriended notorious serial killer Danny Rolling, the Gainesville Ripper. She not only helped him to publish a book but was also briefly engaged to him. She was reportedly writing a book about Rogers.� She told the press that the DA had declined to give Rogers an inventory of what they had taken, but he was certain that some of it was confidential letters between himself and his attorney protected material.� These letters contained Nick Sinardi's specific defense strategy.� Sinardi challenged the search, demanding the return of all items taken.
Less than a week later, the papers were returned, on the judge's orders, but no explanation was forthcoming to reporters as to why they had been seized at all.� There were hints that the action was part of a criminal investigation unrelated to the pending trial.� Strangely, one of the prosecutors admitting to taking some of the items home for the purpose of keeping them secure, but claimed not to have read the documents.
Sinardi requested that none of the material in the documents be used against his client in court.� Reporters speculated that because the cell of another suspected killer, Jonathan Lundin, had been searched, and he had killed a Gibsonton woman in 1996. Sinardi was going to finger this person for Cribbs' murder.
Then one of the other three inmates reported that Rogers had attempted to get Lundin to agree to take the fall. Lundin was named as a defense witness, but he said he would plead the fifth and say nothing at all.� He claimed he was not in town at the time of the Cribbs murder (and his employer gave him an alibi).� In fact, he'd known Cribbs and her mother and wanted to kill Rogers for what he'd done.
Back to square one.� During the trial, Rogers' attorneys attempted to portray him as psychotic, due to early alcoholism, repeated head-banging incidents as a child, and a history of truancy and problems in school. While they did indicate that Cribbs had been seen with another man, they were unable to explain why he was driving Ms. Cribbs' car when he was finally caught (he said she had let him borrow it).� Also, his fingerprints were lifted from her missing wallet, found discarded in an interstate rest area, and spots of her blood was found on shorts he had in his possession.�
The jury listened to the evidence, along with the witness reports, and convicted Rogers of murder.� They then sentenced him to death.� Rogers reportedly said he was not concerned.� He believed he would one day be exonerated.
The California TrialIn July 1997, the State of California indicted Rogers on counts of first-degree murder and arson.� The governors of California and Florida reached an agreement that would extradite Rogers to California to stand trial.� Afterward, he'd be transported to Florida to serve his sentence.� In October, he found himself once again in Los Angeles, to stand trial for strangling Sandra Gallagher and leaving her body in her burning automobile.� The judge allowed evidence from the murders in other states because they showed his pattern.
On June 16, 1999, Rogers took the stand in his trial to insist on his innocence in the Gallagher murder.� He said that a business associate, Istvan "Steve" Kele, was the real killer.� He claimed that the last time he had seen Gallagher, she was alive and with Kele, who was on parole for shooting a maintenance man in 1972.� He went back to prison for violating parole, but at the time of the murder, he was free.� Rogers further stated that after leaving the apartment with Gallagher, Kele then called Rogers to report that he had killed Gallagher.�
However, at this point, Rogers was prohibited from saying anything more about that conversation.� He did indicate that he did not believe what Kele had said, although he admitted that he "kind of felt that she was [dead] and was upset about it."
In closing arguments, Prosecutor Pat Dixon referred to his performance on the stand as "false, syrupy, sweet, sick."� She claimed that the murder was premeditated, not an act of passion as the defense attorney suggested, and therefore should be punished as aggravated murder.
After four days of deliberation, on June 22, 1999, the jury convicted Rogers of the murder, and a few weeks later sentenced him to die.� That August, he was transported back to the control of Florida's Department of Corrections.
He still had to face charges in the murder in Jackson, Mississippi, and while he was a suspect in a murder in Bossier City, Louisiana, charges were not filed.� As long as he faced two death sentences, enough seemed enough.
Lies to Others, Lies to SelfWhile Rogers clearly had problems both genetically and environmentally growing up, this would not cause someone to commit murder, especially not repeatedly.� He did know what he was doing and that it was wrong, so he was perfectly aware that he was causing harm to others and yet he continued to do it.� Then he attempted to frame others for it.� There is little about his behavior that supports a diagnosis of psychosis.
Rogers' behavior is certainly in line with the kind of parenting he received and his apparent inability to deal with frustration, fear, and anger.� He was clearly conflicted due to a love/hate relationship with his mother.� Yet even that does not necessarily produce a killer or even a criminal offender.�
Rogers demonstrated a mind that could compartmentalize and shift to whatever might work in his best interests, no matter how lacking in truth and no matter who might get hurt.� He was apparently doing what comes naturally, going along the path of least resistance.� In "A Mind of Its Own," Australian psychologist Cordelia Fine relies on brain research to describe just how our minds are set up for self-deception and self-assurance. All of us participate to some degree in self-deception, but some do it more profoundly than others.� A psychopath is already poised to lie without remorse, but this added dimension provides an explanation for it.
In fact, the brain operates so subtly in these ways that we fail to see the distortions and thus we believe that the world really is as we experience it.� Our concept of ourselves is fluid, shifting with whatever we find necessary to preserve our constructed ideal.� We can only guard against this distortion by recognizing that this is how the brain behaves and working hard to overcome it.� A killer like Glen Rogers, who wants to save himself from conviction and execution, is hardly likely to be thus motivated.� In fact, he may well have convinced himself that he really was innocent.
Rogers had been scheduled to die in Florida on Feb 14, 1999, but he appealed right away to the Florida Supreme Court, raising several issues.� He claimed that the State had not presented sufficient evidence to support the charges and that the trial court had erred in the handling of mitigating circumstances.� Rogers also argued that the trial court should have granted the defense's motions for a mistrial because a witness was allowed to testify about a misdemeanor for which Rogers was convicted in California.� In addition, the prosecution was allowed to present an improper argument during closing arguments (and one that had gotten another conviction overturned in a different trial).� Rogers also contended that there was newly discovered evidence.
His appeal was delayed until March 2001, and then denied.In 2002, reporters Stephen Combs and John Eckberg co-published "Road Dog," emphasizing how law enforcement had allowed Rogers to slip away from the murder he'd committed in Kentucky in 1993.� They contend that Rogers was a good suspect in the murder of Mark Peters, but a series of mistakes allowed him to get away.� Before the other murders had occurred, California police had arrested him and contacted Ohio law enforcement.� Detectives from Hamilton intended to fly to California to question Rogers about Mark Peters, but their chief believed it would be a waste of time and money.� He canceled their trip. Combs and Eckberg, both of whom had covered the case from different angles, wanted the public (and police) to realize that economic considerations of this nature where a killer is concerned can and did - cost lives.
In April 2005, Rogers filed another appeal, which is still pending. In the event his death sentence is ever overturned, based on a charge of prosecutorial misconduct, it will nullify his eligibility in California to be executed.� Perhaps Louisiana or Mississippi will step forward.� Once can only wonder who Rogers might blame in those murders.� Although he claims the experience has taught him the reality of coincidence, it's doubtful that any jury looking at his case will agree.