Rodriguez being moved to death row in Indiana
Fargo, N.D. — (AP) - Alfonso Rodriguez Jr. began the journey to death row in the federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind. on Tuesday, checking out of the Cass County jail at 8:16 a.m.
The Crookston, Minn., man, who was sentenced to death for the killing of University of North Dakota student Dru Sjodin, spent 1,022 days in the jail.
"By far that made Rodriguez the longest-serving person in the Cass County jail ever," said Chief Deputy Jim Thoreson.
U.S. Marshal Dave Carpenter said he couldn't disclose the exact route Rodriguez will take to Indiana, but said he would be flown there in a government plane from either Sioux Falls, S.D., or Rochester, Minn.
Carpenter said he expected Rodriguez to reach the federal prison on Thursday or Friday.
A federal jury in Fargo last September convicted Rodriguez, 53, of kidnapping resulting in the 2003 death of Sjodin, 22, from Pequot Lakes, Minn.
The same jury voted unanimously for the death penalty. U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson made the sentence official on Feb. 8.
Rodriguez's attorney, Richard Ney, filed an appeal shortly after the sentencing.
Sjodin disappeared from a Grand Forks shopping mall parking lot 3½ years ago. Her body was found nearly five months later in a Minnesota ravine. Authorities said she had been beaten, raped and stabbed.
Rodriguez had been released from prison six months earlier for other crimes that included rape and attempted kidnapping.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)