Reelz TV "Murder Made Me Famous" Features Serial Killer Rodney Alcala –Author and Former LAPD Homicide Detective Steve Hodel Interviewed Regarding his 1971 Arrest and Conviction of Alcala for Attempt Murder and Child Molestation

April 8, 2018
Los Angeles, California

Actor Jay Allen ( Upper left) portrays serial killer Rodney Alcala (Upper right) in Reelz TV “Murder Made Me Famous” Season 3, Episode 9 “The Dating Game Killer.”

Author and former LAPD Homicide Detective Steve Hodel (Lower right) was interviewed for the show regarding the circumstances of his original 1971 arrest of  Alcala for the Hollywood attempt murder/child molestation of 8-year-old victim Tali Shapiro.  After a three-year-search, Detective Hodel arrested and extradited Rodney Alcala from New Hampshire where he was employed as a school counselor at a teenage girls school and extradited him back to Los Angeles. Alcala was convicted on the Hollywood crimes and received a “1-99 year prison sentence” but was released after only two-years after a prison psychiatrist deemed him “cured and fit to reenter society.”

Here is a previous interview I did for CBS News back in 2010 that provides an overview of my original investigation and arrest of Alcala for the 1968 Tali Shapiro attempt murder/assault.

(4 mins)

Alcala would go on to commit more than a dozen murders across the nation and some estimates believe his count could be much higher, possibly over a hundred?  Most of his convictions were the result of a positive DNA match found at the various crime scenes.
Alcala has been incarcerated and has been serving a prison sentence on Death Row for past thirty-nine years.

Rodney Alcala complete victim list and biography 



Alcala has been featured in numerous documentaries.

The latest is REELZ “The Dating Game Killer” Season 3, Episode 9 of “Murder Made Me Famous”.





  1. Linda Whitman on April 8, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    I’m ready for someone to write about YOU, Steve. A biography.

    • Steve Hodel on April 9, 2019 at 1:16 am

      Linda W: Thanks Linda. It’s pretty much all laid out in my five books. Hope to get a Documentary miniseries out next year? Will take about ten episodes to lay it all out on my father’s many serial crimes, but easier than reading five books. Best, Steve

  2. Teresa on April 12, 2018 at 5:23 am

    Steve: you have an interesting life that is for sure….thanks for your good work! Living in L.A. is not for sissies !

    • Steve Hodel on April 9, 2019 at 1:18 am

      Teresa: No, it’s not. But sure miss the beauty of the Great NorthWest. Plus, I want a dog. (Can’t have one here in my apt in LA. So, will work toward that end. Best, Steve.

  3. Laura on April 17, 2018 at 6:52 am

    The frequency with which convicted murderers and other extremely violent and dangerous offenders, are returned to the streets after serving ridiculously light sentences, is the reason so many people still continue to support the death penalty, and want it applied impartially, across the board, and very quickly for people like Alcala. I’d personally be happy to end the death penalty if we could be assured that they would be kept confined until their deaths. A psychiatric diagnoses of mental illness should not result in release, but permanent incarceration in an institution, because there is no way to reliably determine if these dangerous people are “cured” enough to control their violent impulses, and the recidivism rate among paroled murderers, rapists, and child molesters is too high to take the chance.

    Congratulations on the work you did in apprehending this monster, as well as the many other cases you handled over your years of service.

    • Jess Waid on April 19, 2018 at 11:25 am

      I agree with your comment. I don’t believe a serial killer is ever cured. — Ret. LAPD Lt. !! RHD.

  4. Mark M. LAPD Sergeant 2+2 Retired on April 22, 2018 at 5:31 am

    Investigation should be undertaken into any possible connections between Alcala and Robin Graham, a college student who disappeared from her disabled Volkswagen on the Hollywood Freeway in the late night hours of November 20, 1970. Some circumstances in Alcala’s cases and the Graham disappearance may be similar.

    Graham has never been found.

    • Steve Hodel on April 9, 2019 at 1:22 am

      Hi Mark M: I agree. I remember the Robin Graham case. I was working in Hollywood Homicide at that time. I agree that Alcala could well have been a good suspect on that crime. I can’t recall if CHP or Downtown Robb/Homicide handled that investigation? Thanks for your many years of service to the City of LA. Best, Steve

  5. l .b. on March 20, 2019 at 4:25 pm

    I would like to see the. Black Daliah
    Elizabeth Short

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