Lawrence Bittaker is a serial killer who, with a companion, used a large van to prey on young girls in Southern California. The killings took place between June and October 1979, when 5 teen aged girls were kidnapped, raped, tortured, and murdered. His first victim, 16-year-old Cindy Schaeffer, was kidnapped near Redondo Beach, raped, then strangled to death with a wire coat hanger and pliers. Two other teen victims were killed with a sledgehammer and an ice pick. The last victim was dumped on a residential front lawn. Bittaker tape recorded some of the assaults.
He was arrested after a prison acquaintance reported the crimes. Bittaker was convicted in 1981 of rape, torture, kidnap and murder and sent to San Quentin.