A convicted serial killer whose victims included two young boys died Sunday at a hospital in Indiana, authorities said.
Joseph Edward Duncan died at the medical center near United States Penitentiary, Terre Haute, where he was on death row, according to a statement from prosecutors in Riverside County, California.
Duncan, 58, had been diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, the statement said.
He was sentenced to death in 2008 following his conviction for the killing of 9-year-old Dylan Groene and three adults in Idaho.
Following that conviction, Duncan was extradited to Southern California to be tried for the death of 10-year-old Anthony Martinez of Riverside County in 1997. Duncan pleaded guilty and received a sentence of life in prison.
“While I would’ve liked to witness his execution, knowing he is now standing before God being held accountable for what he has done, what he did to my son, and the horrible crimes he committed to others, that’s the real justice,” Anthony’s father, Ernesto Martinez, said in a statement provided by prosecutors.
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Anthony disappeared while playing in a neighbor's yard with his younger brother and friends April 4, 1997 in Beaumont. Duncan initially tried to grab his brother, who escaped, then grabbed Anthony when he intervened, prosecutors said.
He held a knife to his head as he forced him into a car, according to authorities.
On April 19, 1997, a park ranger found Anthony's body among rocks in Berdoo Canyon, located north of Dillon Road in the Indio Hills area.
“The sun is brighter today, and my soul is lighter,” Anthony’s mother, Diana, said. “The world is a more beautiful place without the evil that is Joseph Duncan. God chose to make his end a long suffering and I believe that is fitting. The horror of his thoughts consumed him.”