Dayton Leroy Rogers

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Dayton Leroy Rogers
Born (1953-09-30) September 30, 1953 (age 61)
Moscow, Idaho, U.S.
Other names The Molalla Forest Killer
Criminal penalty
Victims 7
Span of killings
Country United States
State(s) Oregon
Date apprehended

Dayton Leroy Rogers (born September 30, 1953) is a serial killer presently residing on Oregon's death row at the Oregon State Penitentiary for six murders.

He has been tied to the murders of seven women. He preferred street women, usually addicts, prostitutes and runaways. Six were found at a dump site located on privately owned forest lands outside of Molalla, Oregon, and thus he was dubbed the "Molalla Forest Murderer."

Rogers was convicted in 1988 for the murder of his last victim Jennifer Lisa Smith, whom he killed 7 August 1987,[1][2] and in 1989 for a further six murders[3] where he was sentenced to death.[4]

Jennifer Lisa Smith was a convicted prostitute and drug addict.[1] She was in his truck parked in a lot located off of SE McLoughlin Blvd in unincorporated Clackamas County, when he stabbed her 11 times in the breasts, abdomen, and back. She fell out of the truck where she was attended by witnesses from a nearby diner and later died at the hospital.[1] One witness stood by a window relaying the action to another diner that could not see the parking lot, who got on the phone to sheriff's dispatch.

When the victim fell to the ground, several diners ran to their cars in an attempt to block Rogers' car in the parking lot; however, he drove over the landscaping and headed south on SE McLoughlin Blvd (Hwy 99-E). One diner followed Rogers through Milwaukie, Gladstone and Canby, Oregon at speeds up to 100 mph.[1] When the suspect's car pulled into a driveway, the following driver got the address, made it to a phone and called in the info.

His modus operandi was to pick up prostitutes and take them to secluded areas. He took at least six of them into the forest where he would tie them up and kill them.

He was married and had a child. He was a small engine mechanic by trade and he was deeply in debt. He was connected to the bodies through his habit of pouring a mini-bottle of vodka into an orange juice bottle to make himself a screwdriver. Rogers was convicted in May 1989 for the murders of 23-year-old Lisa Marie Mock, 26-year-old Maureen Ann Hodges, 35-old Christine Lotus Adams, 20- year-old Cynthia Devore, 26-year-old Nondace "Noni" Cervantes, and 16-year-old Riatha Gyles. The seventh body was finally identified in August of 2013. ([5]

Three times Rogers was sentenced to death, and three times the Oregon Supreme Court vacated the sentence of death and remanded the case for a new trial. The first two Supreme Court decisions came in 1992 and 2000.[6][7] In both instances, a jury once again imposed the death penalty. On October 11, 2012, the Oregon Supreme Court vacated his latest death sentence, and remanded the case for a new trial on the appropriate penalty.[8]

In Popular Culture[edit]

Portland- based band Poison Idea's song "Feel the Darkness" is based on the story of Dayton Leroy Rogers and one of his victims, who was a friend of the band's.


  1. ^ a b c d Hallman Jr., Tom (29 March 2013). "Victim of Oregon serial killer Dayton Leroy Rogers finally laid to rest after 26 years". The Oregonian. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  2. ^ Oregon v. Rogers (Oregon Supreme Court 7 August 1987).
  3. ^ "Dayton Leroy Rogers has been in out of court for 40 years". The Oregonian. 11 October 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  4. ^ "Dayton Leroy Rogers, Oregon's most prolific serial killer, appealing death sentence". The Oregonian (Associated Press). 13 January 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2013. 
  5. ^ Painter Jr., John (December 31, 1989). "The 1980s". The Oregonian. 
  6. ^ State of Oregon v. Rogers, 313 Or 356, 836 P2d 1308 (1992), cert den 507 US 974 (1993)
  7. ^ State of Oregon v. Rogers, 330 Or 282, 4 P3d 1261 (2000)
  8. ^ State of Oregon v. Rogers, __ Or __ (2012)

Further reading[edit]

  • King, Gary C. (1992). Blood Lust: Portrait of a Serial Sex Killer. Onyx. ISBN 0-451-40352-5. 

External links[edit]