Fresno rapist and murderer headed for death row

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A serial rapist and murderer is now headed to San Quentin State Penitentiary. Eddie Ricky Nealy was sentenced to death for murdering two women, raping them and several others during the past two decades.

Nealy showed no reaction or emotion when he heard his death sentence. But, Friday, his attorney was still fighting for his client. "There's no doubt about it," attorney Eric Green said. "Eddie Ricky Nealy is a bad guy. He's done a lot of bad things in his life, but his murder conviction from the guilt phase was relayed totally on very weak, I would argue, almost anorexic evidence and it could be overturned on appeal."

Nealy was convicted of raping and murdering 14-year-old runaway Jody Lynn Wolfe in 1985. The case was cold until advancements in technology and DNA evidence that tied him to the scene.

"Mr. Nealy is one of the most dangerous people I've ever come across," Deputy District Attorney Steve Wright said. "The citizens of Fresno county are a lot safer tonight now that he is going to be shopped off to San Quentin and finally put to death."

Nealy was not surprised by the sentence, or that the jury who convicted him also recommended. "He was expecting it and is kind of a strange guy," Green said. "He just doesn't get phased."

No victims or members of their families spoke at sentencing and neither did Nealy.

The now 58-year-old Nealy was found guilty of raping and beating Wolfe then dumping her body in an irrigation canal near Whitesbridge in Fresno County. She was only wearing tube socks when her body was discovered two days later.

The judge decided based on all the circumstances of each crime, death was appropriate.
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