A California appeals court on Monday blocked the release of a man dubbed the “Bolder Than Most” rapist who was charged with a string of bizarre and brutal attacks in the San Diego area in the 1980s.
The 4th District Court of Appeals reversed the decision of a judge to grant the conditional release of Alvin Quarles, 57, who was charged with committing more than 50 rapes, robberies and burglaries in the 1980s.
Prosecutors said some of the assaults occurred at knifepoint, and sometimes the victims’ husbands or boyfriends were forced to watch or take part in sex acts that Quarles watched. Some couples were confronted as they slept in motel rooms, and during or after some of the assaults, Quarles talked with victims, bargained for the kind of sex act he wanted and apologized or tried to give money to some of the women, prosecutors said.
Quarles pleaded guilty in 1989 to four rapes along with burglary and robbery. He served 25 years of a 50-year prison sentence. He was then was sent to the mental hospital indefinitely after being designated a “sexually violent predator” with mental disorders that made him a continuing danger to society. He had petitioned for release several times.
The original 2018 ruling — confirmed by the judge last year — would have permitted Quarles to be released to a home in San Diego County on condition that he continued to receive treatment and supervision in the community.
The decision was condemned by victims and local officials.
In its ruling, a three-judge appellate panel said San Diego Superior Court Judge David M. Gill didn’t use the proper legal standard in making his decision and ordered the lower court to hold a new trial on whether Quarles should be released.
The appeals court also said it was concerned about Quarles’s potential for committing more crimes if he fails treatment.
“Quarles is a serial rapist whose crimes were shockingly brutal and destructive,” the court said in its ruling. “If he fails after he is conditionally released, considering his past, we shudder to contemplate the consequences of such a failure. This is not a risk the Superior Court should place on the public.”
The appellate decision was “a victory for the region and public safety,” San Diego County Board of Supervisors member Dianne Jacob tweeted.