Accused killer faces hearing

October 21, 2002 12:00 am

By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

Accused killer Robert Allen Wigley will act as his own attorney at his preliminary hearing in court next week.

Wigley's case will be the first capital murder case in Del Norte County in more than a decade.

Wigley, 42, is accused of murdering Camillia Randall, 18, of Longview Wash., in Crescent City as the woman was travelling from Ashland, Ore. to Guerneville, Calif. to visit friends in October 1994.

Wigley, fired several court-appointed attorneys and attempted to disqualify Judge William Follett from hearing his case in the months since his arrest last year.

District Attorney Robert Drossel said yesterday he believed some of Randall's family will be in town for the hearing, although he warned them the testimony may be graphic.

"I've had a lot of contact with them and they are very supportive of the DA's office going in on this case – especially on the death penalty."

According to the 1994 investigation, Randall called her aunt from Crescent City on Oct. 26, 1994 and told her she was planning on sleeping on the beach in town that night before continuing her trek to Guerneville. Four days later, Randall's body was found wrapped in a blanket in the Stout Grove area of Howland Hill Road. Del Norte County Sheriff's deputies reported she had been raped and murdered.

Wigley was never a suspect when Randall's body was found by hikers seven years ago, but prosecutors linked him to Randall last year when DNA found on her body was matched to Wigley.

A DNA databank of convicted offenders was used to make a "cold hit" on Wigley, according to a press release from the state Attorney General's office. Wigley had previously pleaded guilty to a sexual battery charge in Del Norte County and a sample of his DNA was kept in San Francisco.

Last year, during a jailhouse interview with the Daily Triplicate, Wigley would neither admit nor deny he ever met Randall, claiming he had memory problems. In more recent communications with the Triplicate, and while still maintaining his innocence, Wigley now claims he not only remembers her but knows where she was killed and who committed the crime.

The preliminary hearing is scheduled for Oct. 22.