Motive in slaying of sheriff's explorer

- KTVU has learned of an apparent motive in the killing of an an Alameda County sheriff's explorer.

Laura Rodgers and her boyfriend, Curtys Taylor, both 23, are in jail, charged with murder in the killing of Karla Ramirez-Segoviano.

Rodgers and the victim had worked together at a KFC restaurant in East Oakland, but sources told KTVU crime reporter Henry Lee that the two women developed a closer, personal relationship. That did not sit well with Taylor, sources say.

KFC employees said Taylor was known to be jealous and often sat in the restaurant. They say Rodgers, normally cheerful, wouldn't make eye contact with male customers, but was friendly with women who ordered food.

Investigators say this jealousy was the catalyst behind the killing. The victim was found stabbed and badly burned at Arroyo Viejo Park near 77th and Krause avenues in East Oakland last Thursday.

Alameda County charging documents say Rodgers had the victim pick her up and lured her to the park.

Sources said Ramirez-Segoviano had no idea what was coming. Rodgers allegedly surprised her by stabbing her repeatedly.

Prosecutors say Taylor was fully aware of the murderous plot and was waiting in the park with a gasoline can, gas and a box of matches. He allegedly helped to pour the gasoline on the victim.

The couple then took off in the explorer's car. They allegedly dumped a knife, gas can and clothing at a trash bin at a Days Inn in Hayward, but those items were recovered by police.

Investigators immediately focused on Rodgers because the victim had told her family she was going to be meeting her.

Rodgers told police she had been planning to kill the victim for "several days," the charging documents state.

Taylor was arrested a day after the killing. According to his Facebook page, Taylor has worked at Youth UpRising in East Oakland, a children's advocacy group.

Olis Simmons, the group's president and CEO, said she was "very sad about what this crime says about how we as a nation are holding space for the least among us."

Jesus Avalos, a friend of the explorer, showed up in court Tuesday morning in hopes of learning why his friend was killed.

"I think the people who did this don't have a heart, to be honest, because I don't think she deserved to get killed like this."

Avalos said he didn't know the defendants and was "glad" he didn't.  "Why would they do some cold-blooded things to her like that?" he asked.

Alameda County sheriff's Sgt. Ray Kelly said, "Any time you lose a member of our department to violence like this, senseless violence, it just hurts. There's just no need for it. It goes against everything we try to do every day, and everything we work for. And Karla was part of that."

The defendants are being held without bail. 

A public memorial for the slain explorer is scheduled for 11 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 15 at St. John's Church in San Lorenzo.



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