The Associated Press
PORTLAND — A white supremacist whose Pacific Northwest crime rampage claimed four lives in 2011, including a Washington state couple, has pleaded guilty to federal charges.
Court-appointed attorney Richard Wolf said Wednesday that David “Joey” Pedersen pleaded guilty to two counts of carjacking resulting in death — one for Oregon teenager Cody Myers and the other for Reginald Clark of California.
Pedersen is to be sentenced at an August hearing to life in prison.
He previously pleaded guilty in state court to murder in the slaying of his father and stepmother in Everett.
Police say Pedersen and his girlfriend, Holly Grigsby, killed Pedersen’s father, David “Red” Jones Pedersen, 56, and stepmother, Leslie Pedersen, 69, on Sept. 26, 2011. Police say the couple then drove Red Pedersen’s SUV to Oregon, where they shot and killed 19-year-old Myers and stole his car.
Grigsby told police they shot Myers “because his last name made them think he was Jewish,” according to the charging documents. Prosecutors said Grigsby claimed that she and Pedersen then planned to drive to Sacramento, Calif., to “kill more Jews.”
The couple also killed Clark, 53, an African-American man who was found shot to death in the back seat of his pickup in Eureka, Calif, according to police. Pedersen and Grigsby were arrested Oct. 5, 2011, in Yuba City, Calif.
Grigsby pleaded guilty to federal charges last month and will receive a life sentence.
The U.S. Department of Justice took over the prosecutions of the couple in August 2012, alleging their crimes were aimed at promoting and funding a movement to “purify” and “preserve the white race” through murder. Attorney General Eric Holder decided not to seek the death penalty.