Surviving victims of a double murder ‘monster’ expected to testify at sentencing hearing
TAMPA, Fla. - Next month, a man who confessed to torturing and killing two people will learn his fate, but not before those who say they escaped his wrath have their say in court.
Two decades ago, notorious killer Steven Lorenzo went hunting for his next victim. He targeted and tortured gay men in Tampa, killing two of them.
In December, he pleaded guilty to both murders and asked for the death penalty.
Pam Williams, the mother of Jason Galehouse, one of Lorenzo's victims, hopes his wish comes true.
During an interview with FOX 13, Williams described Lorenzo as, "totally nuts." She said he is a "monster. He deserves to be put to death."
Steven Lorenzo sits inside at Tampa courtroom.
Prosecutors say Galehouse and another gay man, Michael Waccholtz, were murdered by Lorenzo and his co-defendant Scott Schweickert.
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Williams has been waiting nearly 20 years for justice but now in failing health feared she wouldn't live long enough to see it.
Prosecutors say Lorenzo and Schweickert lured the victims to Lorenzo's Seminole Heights home. They say the victims were drugged, tortured, used as sex slaves, and later murdered.
Prosecutors say portions of the crimes were videotaped but during a hearing in December, Lorenzo argued it all consensual.
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"Mr. Galehouse agreed to be bound. He said he had done this before," Lorenzo claimed.
At his sentencing next month, some of the surviving victims are expected to testify, for the first time.
Steven Lorenzo confessed to killing Jason Galehouse and Michael Waccholtz.
Williams and Jason's best friend, Tyler Butler, tracked down one of those victims years ago and alerted police when the case grew cold.
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"He actually gave us his statement and told us what happened to him being drugged and tortured and he escaped through a bathroom window," recalled Butler.
Williams says that tip broke the case wide open.
"Just think, if we hadn’t pushed this, he could still be out on the street murdering and cutting up people, so he messed with the wrong person when he messed with my son," said Williams.
Steven Lorenzo and his co-defendant Scott Schweickert.
Both Williams and Butler have been on a relentless journey for justice that now has one final stop in a Tampa courtroom.
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"Pam’s hope has always been during the battle with cancer she just wants justice and wants to live long enough to see justice," explained Butler.
Williams knows Butler will be by her side during Lorenzo's sentencing hearing, as he's been from the beginning.
"He’s like my second son," Williams explained.
Lorenzo will be formally sentenced on February 6, 2023.