A 67-year-old Florida prison inmate, who is already serving time for a 1987 murder in that state, pleaded guilty Thursday to a murder in Orange County and was immediately sentenced to another 15 years to life in prison.
Steven Wyvern White on Thursday admitted killing 79-year-old Dr. Cedric Horn, a semi-retired dentist of Santa Ana who was reported missing in 1986, according to former Senior Deputy District Attorney Larry Yellin, who is now a judge, when he filed charges against White two years ago.
White pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and a special circumstances allegation involving a prior murder conviction was dismissed, according to court records.
Horn’s body has never been recovered, Yellin said two years ago.
White made “incriminating statements” regarding Horn’s disappearance while being questioned by Orange County sheriff’s deputies in Florida two years ago, Yellin said.
Detectives suspected White befriended Horn in order to steal from him, Yellin said. A check for $60,000 was drawn from the victim’s bank account, which the defendant tried to spend after Horn disappeared, Yellin said.
Before being extradited to Orange County, White was serving a life sentence for killing 48-year-old James Albert Boyd in February 1987, Yellin said.
White, posing as Boyd, attempted to withdraw money from the victim’s bank account and then tried to refinance his truck.
When White was arrested in June 1987, he had Boyd’s property on him, Yellin said. After White’s conviction for killing Boyd, police in Florida told sheriff’s deputies in Orange County that the defendant was in possession of property belonging to Horn, Yellin said.
Horn left his home for a business meeting in Northern California on March 7, 1986, with plans to visit his daughter in Oregon, as well, Yellin said. Horn, however, told his daughter during the trip that he changed his mind and was headed home, Yellin said.
The victim’s car was found in Houston on April 7, 1986, with Horn’s blood soaking a passenger seat headrest, Yellin said.
In 2015, investigators established a DNA profile from the evidence in the car that matched the victim, Yellin said.
–City News Service
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