Report: Probation Couldn't Prevent Serial Killings

The men wore tracking devices and checked in with police every 30 days when the alleged crimes were committed last year

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    Franc Cano, 27, and Steven Dean Gordon, 45, pleaded not guilty Monday, May 19, 2014, to the rapes and murders of four women in Orange County, officials said.

    An internal review by federal probation officials has found that officers properly supervised two sex offenders who are charged with the rape and murder of four women in California.

    A report from an internal review praised probation agents for classifying Franc Cano and Steven Dean Gordon as high risk and warning them not to spend time together.

    The reviewers said it would have been difficult to compare GPS data from the state system tracking Cano and the federal system tracking Gordon to see how often they disobeyed the warning.

    Parolees Plead Not Guilty to OC Rapes, Slayings

    [LA] Parolees Plead Not Guilty to OC Rapes, Slayings
    Two parolees accused of raping and killing four women in Anaheim and Santa Ana while wearing GPS bracelets pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges in court. Vikki Vargas reports for the NBC4 News at Noon Monday, May 19, 2014.

    Matthew Rowland, national chief of the federal courts' probation office, said there is no way to completely incapacitate offenders determined to commit new crimes.

    Cano and Gordon were found together out of state in 2010 and 2012. Data from the GPS monitors helped link the men to the disappearance of three women in Orange County last year and the murder of a fourth whose body was found at a trash sorting plant, authorities said.

    Albert Silva, whose sister was among the victims, said he didn't understand why they didn't check to see if the men were together, adding he didn't think each could have carried out the crimes on his own.

    "I still think they weren't doing their job," Silva said.

    Bill Sessa, a spokesman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said he did not know whether federal probation offices were among the 87 law enforcement agencies trained on how to access the state system used to track Cano via GPS.

    California parole officials say the state is also investigating its handling of the offenders, but they have declined to release a report or supervision records.

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