FRESNO (AP) — A Fresno man who stabbed his co-worker dozens of times in 1984 and then cut out the man’s heart and put it in his jacket pocket has been released from prison despite objections from Gov. Jerry Brown.
Theodore LeLeaux Jr. was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole for the killing of his co-worker Kenny Carlock. He was set free last week after a Fresno County judge determined he no longer posed a threat to society, the Fresno Bee reported Thursday.
LeLeaux was eligible for parole in 2012 and again this year. Brown objected, and he remained in prison. A Fresno County judge overturned the decision last week, and LeLeaux was paroled to San Luis Obispo, where he lives with his wife.
“It’s unbelievable,” Carlock’s sister, Gayle McCracken said. “How can a judge overrule the governor of the state of California? I thought the governor was top dog.”
Police discovered Carlock’s mutilated body inside his apartment on June 5, 1984. The 25-year-old man had been stabbed 77 times.
LeLeaux and Carlock worked for the same mail courier service, Fresno police say. Detectives found signs of a struggle inside the apartment, as well as LeLeaux’s pager, bloody work shirt and shoes, court records show.
The day after the attack, LeLeaux, then 23, was arrested on suspicion of burglary. Carlock’s heart was discovered in LeLeaux’s jacket pocket, police said.
During a parole hearing in 2008, LeLeaux said he was under the influence of methamphetamines and suffered a delusion and a psychotic break when he killed Carlock.
McCracken said she plans to keep calling prison officials and the governor until she gets answers.
“Someone dropped the ball because this guy is dangerous,” she said. “I have told them that he will strike again, and it could be your heart the next time.”