LOS ANGELES: A 38-year-old man in California has been charged with poisoning at least eight homeless people and videotaping them as they suffered seizure-like symptoms, vomiting and difficulty breathing, authorities said Thursday.
Several of the victims ended up in the hospital in mid-May after ingesting food laced with oleoresin capsicum, “which is twice as strong as the pepper spray used by police”, the Orange County district attorney’s office said in a statement.
“These human beings were preyed upon because they are vulnerable,” said district attorney Todd Spitzer.
“They were exploited and poisoned as part of a twisted form of entertainment, and their pain was recorded so that it could be relived by their attacker over and over again.”
Authorities said William Robert Cable poisoned the victims in Huntington Beach, south of Los Angeles, and watched and filmed them as they writhed in pain.
Several of the victims were given beer to entice them to eat the poisoned food, they added.
Cable, who was arrested on May 22, faces up to 19 years in prison if convicted of the poisoning charges.