ARTHUR GARY BISHOP
Bishop did not run far when he went into hiding. A simple name change was enough to throw police off his track, and Bishop remained in Salt Lake City, reborn as "Roger W. Downs." He used that name to join the Big Brother program, thereby placing himself in close proximity to boys craving a sympathetic father figure. Author Clifford Linedecker, in his book Thrill Killers, reports that spokesmen for the Big Brother/Big Sister organization later admitted receiving tips that "Downs" had molested at least two children while enrolled with their program, but neither was his assigned "little brother." The accusations were allegedly reported to police, who took no action.
The Mormon Church excommunicated Bishop in October 1978, but if he even knew it, the official shunning had no visible effect on Bishop's life. He worked odd jobs, indulged himself with boys whenever possible, and fought the secret urges that demanded more than sex.
A year after his excommunication from the church, he lost that struggle and surrendered to the darkness festering within.
Four-year-old Alonzo Daniels was playing in the courtyard of his Salt Lake City apartment complex on October 14, 1979, when he vanished without a trace. His worried mother summoned relatives to search the complex and surrounding streets, to no avail. Police were summoned, going door-to-door. They met neighbor Roger Downs almost immediately, in his flat across the hall from Alonzo's apartment, but their questions were routine and Downs denied any knowledge of the boy's whereabouts.
Officers had no way of knowing that Alonzo was already dead when they reached the apartment complex. Bishop had lured him from the courtyard with a promise of candy, attempting to undress and fondle Alonzo in his living room. He panicked when the boy began to cry, sobbing threats to tell his mother what had happened. Bishop clubbed the child with a hammer, but it failed to stop Alonzo's wailing. Finally, Bishop carried him into the bathroom and drowned Alonzo in the tub. Afterward, he stuffed the corpse into a large cardboard box and carried it out to his car, past Alonzo's mother as she paced the courtyard, calling out his name.
By late afternoon, Salt Lake County's search and rescue team had joined the fruitless hunt for Alonzo Daniels. Hundreds of civilians pitched in over the next few days, including students and faculty from the University of Utah and members of a Teamsters Union local. Photos of Alonzo and descriptions of his clothinga cream-colored T-shirt with the words "Chocolate," "Lime" and "Vanilla" printed on itwere printed and broadcast throughout the state. Police questioned hundreds of people, but none outside his family acknowledged seeing the boy.
By the night of October 14, he was already gone. Bishop drove the crated corpse to Cedar Fort, 20 miles southwest of Salt Lake City, and buried Daniels in the desert, his unmarked grave shaded by trees that gave the nearby town its name.
Returning home, he felt a mixture of emotions. Revulsion at his crime vied with fear of arrest and perverse excitement. Dominating all other sensations was a certainty that he would kill again, unless he found some means by which to stop himself.