September #51 : LA Snuff Film - by Scott Hess

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Table of Contents


Born to be Wild

Locked Up in Limbo

Amazing Grace

Chai Guy

Catching Up With...Ruby Amagwula

Desperately Seeking Separatists

Hack vs. Hacker

LA Snuff Film

Dole Banana Peel

Say What

Feel Like a Nuttall

Caps Are On

What Dubya Stands For

The Disability Dis

Emotional Rescue

The End of L’Affaire



Mother Inferior

Not for Adults Only

Get Over It

Lipo Handles

Topic of Cancer

Success Sucks

A Load of Fit

Thanks for the Complement

A Loaded Question

Message in a Bottle

Regarding Henry



Source of a Different Color

Mom's Recipe

Three Penny Opera

Letters to the Editor September 1999

Woody Cheers on Rx Marijuana

Digest This



Facts Behind the Fix

Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

email print

September 1999

LA Snuff Film

by Scott Hess

As if following the script of a homo-horror movie, in 1994 Los Angeles police charged Juan Chavez, now 35, with killing five gay men between 1986 and 1989. In March, to avoid the death penalty, Chavez finally ’fessed up to the crimes. “I wanted to get them before they got me,” Chavez said of his victims. “They’re spreading AIDS.” On June 21 the saga ended in a courtroom just outside Hollywood, where Chavez was sentenced to life—five times over.

The fact that it took the LAPD five years to connect Chavez with the murders broadcasts “serious problems with its treatment of hate crimes,” said Jon Davidson of LAMBDA Legal Defense Fund. But LA District Attorney Michael Duarte said Chavez just wasn’t the serial-killer type: “He didn’t take souvenirs from the crime scene.”  

“What is this, Silence of the Lambs?” said Davidson. “Either way, Chavez killed those men because of the persistent stereotype that all gay men have AIDS.”

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