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Leroy Dean McGILL





Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Retaliation because the victim has accused him of stealing a shotgun
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: July 13, 2002
Date of birth: February 22, 1963
Victim profile: Charles Perez
Method of murder: Doused with gasoline and set on fire
Location: Maricopa County, Arizona, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on November 10, 2004

Supreme Court of Arizona

opinion CR-04-0405-AP


On July 13, 2002, Leroy Dean McGill walked into an apartment in north Phoenix carrying a cup full of gasoline. McGill doused Charles Perez and Nova Banta with the gasoline and lit them on fire.

Perez subsequently died from his burns. Banta was so severely burned that treating physicians had to put her in a medically-induced coma in order to save her life.

McGill, a twice convicted felon (armed robberies), committed these crimes because the victims had accused him of stealing a shotgun.

McGill had been staying with the owner of the gun. As a result of the accusation, the gun owner threw McGill out of his home, causing McGill to become homeless.

After starting the fire, McGill asked an acquaintance if he could smell burning flesh. He also bragged that he had mixed the gasoline with Styrofoam to form a gel so that it would stick to the victims and burn hotter.


Presiding Judge: Hon. Frank T. Galati
Prosecutor: Catherine M. Hughes
Defense Counsel: Maria L. Schaffer & Elizabeth Todd
Start of Trial: October 6, 2004
Verdict: November 10, 2004
Sentencing: November 10, 2004

Aggravating Circumstances

Especially heinous, cruel or depraved
Zone of danger
Prior Criminal Record


[Direct Appeal pending before the Arizona Supreme Court]


Leroy Dean McGill



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