Venice Boardwalk Rampage Suspect Pleads Not Guilty; Next Court Date Sept. 4
Posted Aug. 9, 2013, 9:20 am
Brenton Garen / Editor-in-Chief
Venice boardwalk rampage suspect Nathan Louis Campbell, a 38-year-old transient from Colorado, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to one count of murder, 16 counts of assault with a deadly weapon, and 17 counts of hit-and-run.
Campbell is due back in court Sept. 4.
Earlier this week, flowers and candles near The Candle Café on Ocean Front Walk in Venice marked the spot where Italian tourist Alice Gruppioni was killed and 16 other people injured after Campbell allegedly plowed into crowds in a Dodge Avenger.
The incident began at about 6 pm Saturday when Campbell began his rampage in the 100 block of Dudley Avenue before turning onto Ocean Front Walk and driving south.
Video of the incident shows the driver of the car seeming to purposely aim at pedestrians as he swerved on and off the curb.
The suspect abandoned the car about two miles away at Ocean Park Boulevard and Beverly Avenue in Santa Monica before turning himself in at the Santa Monica Police Department at about 8 pm Saturday.
Campbell was allegedly living in his car with a history of minor run-ins with the law including convictions dating back to 2002 for drunkenness in public and lighting an illegal fire, according to reports.
According to the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department inmate information website, Campbell was booked for murder following the incident at 2:43 am Sunday. Bail was initially set at $1 million, but has since been increased to $1.48 million.
The website lists his birthday as just two days prior to the incident on Thursday, Aug. 1.
The family of Gruppioni has expressed their gratitude for the thoughts and prayers from people all around the world.
“We appreciate the professional attention and kindness shown by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office while advising us this morning (Tuesday) of the impending prosecution of Nathan Louis Campbell,” a statement from the family read. “We also wish to express our heartfelt gratitude to Consul General of Italy, Giuseppe Perrone, for assisting us in expediting arrangements to allow us to bring Alice home.”
The statement said no words could “adequately express the grief and sorrow” they were feeling as they mourned “the loss of a beautiful person, family member, and young bride.”
“Thank you all for your concerns as we begin to search for answers,” the statement read.