The Truth About Rodney Alcala's Time In The Military

Serial killer and rapist Rodney Alcala, the so-called "Dating Game Killer," has been convicted of killing a 12-year-old girl in California and six women in New York but is suspected of many more murders. Signs of the photographer's descent into becoming a brutal serial killer started as early as the early 1960s while Alcala was enlisted in the Army. 

According to Dr. Todd Grande, who shared his Rodney Alcala Case Analysis on YouTube, Alcala enlisted in the Army at the age of 17 in 1960 intending to become a paratrooper. He served for four years but remained a clerk the entire time. His behavior toward the end of his tenure led to Alcala being diagnosed with severe, chronic anti-social personality disorder, according to Grande. Anti-social personality disorder is also referred to as sociopathy. 

The Mayo Clinic describes the condition as "a mental disorder in which a person consistently shows no regard for right and wrong and ignores the rights and feelings of others. People with antisocial personality disorder tend to antagonize, manipulate, or treat others harshly, or with callous indifference. They show no guilt or remorse for their behavior."

Steve Braccini, a former NYPD cold-case detective told CBS' 48 hours, "The military realized in 1963 that they had him ... he was a sexual deviant."

Rodney Alcala went AWOL and made a creepy sexual advance on his little sister

During Rodney Alcala's stint in the Army, ABC News reported he went absent without leave, or AWOL, while stationed at Fort Campbell near the Tennessee-Kentucky border. One of those trips started with weekend pass to Nashville, where Alcala stole a car, then robbed someone of their credit card, and went to New York City.

Once there, an Army report said, "One night after leaving a bar [in New York], he saw a young lady walking down the street. He followed her a short distance and struck her with a Coke bottle." The woman got away.

He ended up in Myrtle Beach and was charged by military police for going AWOL, yet escaped while they were taking him back to Fort Campbell and made it all the way to California to where his mother and sisters lived. While he was there he purposely showed his penis to his youngest sister, "who became hysterical" according to the Army report. When asked if he wanted to have sex with his little sister, Alcala said he didn't know. 

The Army called Alcala's behavior a nervous breakdown, according to Grande. Alcala pleaded guilty to the military charges, paid a fine, and ended up honorably discharged from the Army, according to ABC News. He went on to rape and murder until he was jailed in 1979 for killing a 12-year-old California girl