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Man who helped catch alleged O.C. serial killer to be rewarded

January 25, 2012 |  9:47 am

Reward given to man who helped catch alleged homeless serial killer

The man credited for helping catch a former Marine charged with stabbing four homeless men to death will be rewarded Wednesday in Orange County.

Donny Hopkins, 32, of Yorba Linda will receive the $5,000 promised by the Assn. of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs for "information leading to the capture of the serial killer who was systematically preying on Orange County’s homeless," according to a news release from the association.

The married father of two saw Itzcoatl Ocampo stab 64-year-old transient John Berry behind a Carl's Jr. restaurant at 5701 E. La Palma Ave. and chased him, said Kimberly Edds of the Assn. of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs.

Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas alleged Berry was targeted because he was interviewed and photographed by the Los Angeles Times for a story on the homicides.

The deputies' union and the Anaheim Police Officers Assn. plan to donate an extra $5,000 to Mercy House, which provides shelter and other services to the homeless, the news release said.

Ocampo, 23, of Yorba Linda has been charged with murdering Berry, 53-year-old James McGillivray, 42-year-old Lloyd “Jim” Middaugh, and 57-year-old Paulus Cornelius “Dutch” Smith. Ocampo is charged with four counts of murder with special circumstances, making him subject to the death penalty. He is being held without bail.


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-- Dalina Castellanos

Photo: Former marine Itzcoatl Ocampo, 23, of Yorba Linda, at his arraignment in Orange County last week. Ocampo is flanked by defense attorney Randall Longwith, left, and Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas. Credit: Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times