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Yosemite Victims Were Raped

The handyman who admitted to beheading a Yosemite naturalist and killing three sightseers has also confessed to sexually assaulting his two teen-age victims.

According to court documents filed Monday, Cary Stayner told the FBI he assaulted Silvina Pelosso and Juli Sund before killing them. The revelation came in a six-page affidavit filed to support a request for bodily fluid samples. A judge has ordered Stayner to comply.

The documents say Stayner also led the FBI to the knives he says he used to decapitate Joie Armstrong and slash the throat of Juli Sund. When the weapons were recovered, they still had dried blood and fingerprints on them.

The affidavit is the first public acknowledgment by investigators that the two teenage victims were sexually assaulted before they and Carole Sund were killed. In a previous jailhouse interview with a television reporter, Stayner claimed he didn't sexually assault any of the women.

Cary Stayner

He has not yet been charged in the sightseers' murders, but he has been charged with murder in the July 21 death of Armstrong.

Stayner is the prime suspect in the sightseers slayings but charges are pending while an FBI-led task force continues to investigate whether others might have been involved. The three disappeared during a sightseeing trip in February.

Stayner has fought a request to give samples of his blood, hair and saliva to the FBI. A hearing is scheduled for Tuesday on the request as well as other motions in the case.

The affidavit says evidence was collected from the room where "Stayner claims to have sexually assaulted Juli Sund and Silvina Pelosso and murdered both Carole Sund and Silvina Pelosso."

While Stayner was being interrogated by the FBI, he "claimed that hair from his body was left on the bedspread in their motel room, but he returned later and changed the bed."

Analysis by the FBI crime lab has yielded trace evidence including hairs and possible bodily fluid stains.

The crime lab has also recovered two partial fingerprints from the anonymous letter that Stayner claims to have authored and mailed to the FBI in March, directing investigators to Juli Sund's body.

A DNA sample from the adhesive strip on the envelope has also been recovered.

At Stayner's direction, investigators also seized the camouflage pants and black shorts he was wearing the night he says he killed the sightseers.

Based on that and other evidence, U.S. Magistrate Lawrence J. O'Neill signed a warrant Monday to obtain a full set of fingerprints from Stayner and samples of his blood, hair and saliva.

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