Prosecutors said Wednesday that they plan to seek the death penalty against a
man suspected of killing 4 prostitutes in rural Northern California.
The announcement was made in Marin County Superior Court as Joseph Naso, 78,
re-entered not-guilty pleas to 4 counts of murder.
The former Reno photographer is accused of killing Roxene Roggasch in 1977,
Carmen Colon in 1978, Pamela Parsons in 1993 and Tracy Tafoya in 1994. All 4
were found strangled in rural areas of Northern California.
Deputy District Attorney Dori Ahana would not elaborate on the decision to
pursue the death penalty. She noted that the case involved multiple victims, a
special circumstance that made Naso eligible for the punishment.
Prosecutors presented dozens of Naso's photographs — including 2 showing
alleged victims — where the women appear unconscious or dead. Prosecutors claim
Naso drugged his victims before killing them, photographing their bodies and
leaving them in rural areas.
Naso also kept a safe deposit box with newspaper clippings of the slayings, and
investigators found journals and calendars that noted Naso's meetings with
Tafoya and Parsons around the time of their deaths in Yuba County.
Naso is acting as his own attorney. He has argued that he never used drugs on
his photography subjects.
He said that he had a rapport with women that made them comfortable disrobing
for the camera.
He also argued that his lists and calendars were merely notes about models, and
that most of the women seen in his pictures "are alive and well."
(source: Fox News)