A man in New Mexico who has confessed to two murders already has now admitted to a third, copping to the killing of a 13-year-old girl more than three decades ago, Albuquerque police say. Paul Apodaca told police he killed Stella Gonzales near Tingley Beach, a park in Albuquerque, in 1988 by shooting her in the head as she walked with a friend, authorities said. Apodaca has admitted to the killings of Althea Oakley, also in 1988, and of Kaitlyn Arquette in 1989. Oakley was 21, Arquette 18. Apodaca has been charged with Oakley’s murder, and police said the district attorney is reviewing further charges. Police said Apodaca did not appear to know Gonzales, and that he likely targeted her because she was “a female who was in a vulnerable position.”
“Based on the fact that his victims were picked, really, for characteristics that they held as opposed to any prior interactions with them we believe that Paul Apodaca was a serial killer,” Deputy Commander Kyle Hartsock with the Criminal Investigation Division of the APD said Friday. Apodaca already has a long criminal history, with a 1995 rape conviction and an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon guilty plea from March of this year.