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Man pleads guilty to killing woman, 76, on her morning walk

August 16, 2011 |  2:45 pm

Sketch of suspect A 28-year-old man pleaded guilty Tuesday to sexually assaulting and beating to death a 76-year-old Gardena woman who was on her morning walk.

Severa Madrona After prosecutors declined to seek the death penalty against him, Thedward Candler pleaded guilty to killing Severa Madrona on Sept. 18, 2007, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney's office.

He also admitted to committing the murder during other felonies: rape, sodomy and kidnapping.

Madrona died of a blunt-force head wound, prosecutors said. Her body was found dumped in the backyard of a Gardena home.

Soon after the killing, authorities released a sketch of a possible suspect. More than a month later, Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies arrested Candler.

Candler is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 4 and faces life in prison without possibility of parole. He was previously convicted of two felonies: an attempted robbery in 2000 and assault with a deadly weapon in 2001


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-- Tony Barboza

Photos: (left) A sketch of the suspect.

(right) Severa Madrona. Credit: DMV