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Hotel Worker Charged in Killings

January 4, 2000

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) _ The hotel housekeeper accused of killing five people last week was arrested in 1997 for a vicious stabbing in Alabama but was never prosecuted.

The district attorney in Mobile County, Ala., said Tuesday that a grand jury refused to indict Silvio Izquierdo-Leyva after investigators failed to get the victim and a key witness to testify.

Police said Izquierdo-Leyva, 36, fatally shot four co-workers at Tampa’s Radisson Bay Harbor hotel Thursday, then killed a woman in an attempt to steal her car. Three other hotel employees were wounded.

Izquierdo-Leyva is being held without bail on charges of murder and carjacking. A motive for the shootings has not been disclosed.

Nearly 200 people attended a funeral Tuesday for Dolores Perdomo, 56, the motorist shot in the botched carjacking. A service was planned Tuesday night for another victim, Jose R. Aguilar, 40.

Holly Winn, the wife of the Alabama stabbing victim, said she still can’t understand what happened.

``Silvio was one of my best friends,″ she said. ``He would come eat at our house. He would drink there at weekends. He never appeared violent. He was shy, quiet.″

Ms. Winn said Izquierdo-Leyva, looking ``dazed, not his usual self,″ showed up at her home a week after she moved in with her future husband. Ms. Winn said Izquierdo-Leyva stabbed the man repeatedly. The man needed about 200 stitches, and his face and arms are scarred.

Mobile County District Attorney John Tyson said records indicate his office repeatedly tried to contact Ms. Winn and her husband, Luis Gordillo-Leal, to ask them to testify but could not reach them.

Ms. Winn said she and Gordillo-Leal moved to Tampa soon after the stabbing but gave statements to prosecutors before moving.

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