Sentenced: June 29,
1995, age 30
Residence: Los Angeles
Crimes: Murder, robbery
Date of crimes: Oct. 29, 1992
Location: Donut Inn at El Segundo
Boulevard and Van Ness Avenue, Gardena
Victim: Soy Song Lao, 22
Facts: Sitting quietly at a table, Virgil
waited until the young Cambodian immigrant was alone as she worked in
He grabbed her, dragged her into a
bathroom at knife-point, gagged her, tied her up with two aprons and a
small hand towel, hacked her with a knife 30 times, and walked away.
Although customers stood at the
counter, he calmly collected $12 from the cash register and ran.
Described in court as a "vicious,
savage animal," Virgil days later stabbed a motel maid 20 times in the
course of a robbery and attempted rape in Los Angeles; however, she
Lao, who had escaped her country's
"killing fields," worked at the doughnut shop while attending USC.
District Attorney Marc Chomel said Virgil took the life of a "young
bright light that showed a lot of promise."
Lester Wayne Virgil