Man sentenced to 500+ years for rapes denied parole despite new law

Posted at 6:14 PM, Aug 10, 2023

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man sentenced to more than 500 years behind bars for raping two women in San Diego County has been denied parole, which he could have received under a new state law, it was announced Thursday.

Though Randal Gers, 60, was initially ineligible for a parole hearing until the year 2378, a change to California law allowed him to receive a hearing recently under the state's Elderly Parole Program. That change, enacted in 2021, lowered the age of qualification for a hearing to inmates who are 50 years of age or older and have served at least 20 years of continuous incarceration.

Gers was sentenced to 567 years to life for kidnapping two women on separate occasions in 1995. It was the longest prison sentence in San Diego County history at the time.

According to the San Diego County District Attorney's Office, the victims were kidnapped at knifepoint, tied up and raped. Prosecutors allege one victim was left tied to a tree overnight after the assault and Gers later returned to continue the attack.

At the time, Gers had a prior conviction for sexually assaulting a 12- year-old, the D.A.'s Office said.

In opposing parole, prosecutors argued Gers had not shown remorse or completed any self-help programming while incarcerated and the parole board also heard statements from the two victims.

Gers was denied parole, but can receive another hearing in five years.

"These were extremely brutal and horrific crimes deserving of the life in prison sentence the defendant received," San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan said in a statement. "It is hard to believe that a sexual predator with multiple victims is eligible for release under this new law, causing additional trauma to victims who had to overcome the damage of the violent crimes they endured and thought their tormenter had received a final justice and sentence."

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