Railroad Killer Victim Testifies

Monday, May 22nd 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

HOUSTON (AP) — The only known survivor of an attack by admitted serial killer Angel Maturino Resendiz testified today that he left her for dead after killing her boyfriend along railroad tracks near the University of Kentucky.

The woman, who was the prosecution's final witness in the trial's three-day penalty phase, told jurors tearfully that Maturino Resendiz tied and gagged her and her boyfriend, Christopher Maier, after confronting them near campus in August 1997.

The defendant raped and beat her, and ``came over and hit Chris. It seemed like a big log, but it was a rock, I found out,'' she said.

Maier, 21, became the first known fatality in Maturino Resendiz's two-year killing spree, authorities said. The woman was badly injured.

Following the woman's testimony, the defense called only one witness, FBI agent Kimberly Wilkins, who was present during negotiations for Maturino Resendiz's surrender.

She was asked about the terms of the defendant's surrender, and said the family asked for three things: psychological help for Maturino Resendiz, humane treatment and jail visitation rights.

The defense has contended that the demand for humane treatment was a plea for no death penalty, since Mexico has no death penalty and Maturino Resendiz is a Mexican citizen.

Closing arguments were scheduled for later Monday.

Maturino Resendiz, a 40-year-old Mexican national, was convicted on Thursday, when jurors rejected defense arguments that he was insane when he raped and killed Claudia Benton in December 1998. He also has admitted to eight other slayings, including Maier's, from 1997 to 1999.

During the trial's penalty phase, prosecutors have sought to persuade jurors to grant Maturino Resendiz his wish to die by lethal injection for the attack on Benton. The state also has presented evidence of the eight other killings.

Maturino Resendiz has told the court outside the jury's presence that he would rather go to the Texas death chamber than spend life in prison, the jury's only alternative. A life sentence means he would not be eligible for parole until 2039.