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Inmate charged in 1991 slaying, rape of 16-year-old Compton girl

Map shows where Melissa Alcantar's body was found in 1991 Compton slaying.
More than 20 years have passed since 16-year-old Melissa Alcantar was found slain in the Compton thrift store where she worked. She was raped, authorities say, and her hands and feet were tied.

On Thursday, authorities said that a 63-year-old inmate serving time in a state prison in Washington had been tied to the Oct. 17, 1991, slaying.

Alcantar had cuts on her body when she was found by the owner of the store in the 900 block of East Rosecrans Avenue.

James A. Boyd was extradited to Los Angeles and and is awaiting trial, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said. He was charged with murder with special circumstances for a rape allegation by county prosecutors.

Boyd was serving time in Washington on an unrelated conviction. 

The case had gone cold until 2000, when the Sheriff's Department took over law enforcement responsibilities in Compton. The case was reopened by Det. Joseph Purcell, who uncovered new leads and additional evidence that led him to Boyd.

Boyd was being held Thursday night on no bail at County Jail, according to online booking records. 

No trial date has been set.


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-- Robert J. Lopez

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