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He moved to New York and used the alias John Berger to enroll in film school at New York University where, ironically enough, he studied under Roman Polanski.After being recognized thanks to an FBI poster, Alcala was finally identified as the perpetrator in the rape and attempted murder of Tali Shapiro.Then, authorities regrettably let parolee and flight risk Alcala travel to New York to “visit relatives.” Investigators now believe that within seven days of his arrival there, he killed a college student named Elaine Hover who was the daughter of a popular Hollywood nightclub owner and goddaughter of both Sammy Davis Jr. Soon after all of this, Alcala somehow got a job at the as a typesetter in 1978, under his real name, which was now attached to a substantial criminal record.A typist by day, by night he lured in young girls to be part of his professional photography portfolio — some of them never to be heard from again.He was arrested in 1971, but only sent to prison on charges of assault (Shapiro’s family kept her from testifying, making a rape conviction unattainable).
Bradshaw, if not for a healthy jolt of women’s intuition, would almost certainly be remembered today as one of Alcala’s victims.
Shapiro barely survived her rape and beating; her life saved by a passerby who’d reported a tip to police on a possible abduction.
Alcala fled his apartment when the police arrived and remained a fugitive for years afterward.
He was a handsome, charming guy who posed as a fashion photographer.
No one knows for sure how many people Alcala killed, but authorities estimate the number to be 130. He was born in 1943 in Texas and his given name was Rodrigo Jacques Alcala Buquor.