Authorities from Oregon and California have found more than 100 pages of chilling letters and notes purportedly written by a transient linked to the so-called "boxcar killings" including two in Utah.
Authorities raided an apartment building and law office in Roseville this week, where they found notes and letters that appear to have been written or dictated by accused multiple murderer Robert Joseph Silveria to George Schlichting, a former Placer County jailmate, police said.Silveria, a 37-year-old, freight-train-riding transient, was arrested in March by a railroad agent in Roseville. He has been charged with murders in Oregon, Kansas and Florida, and has confessed to killings in Montana, Utah, Washington and California. Police believe he may be responsible for at least 13 murders.
In letters and notes attributed to "Sidetrack," his hobo moniker, Silveria expresses feelings of rage, remorse, pride and doom and describes his demeanor after some of the homicides.
Police in Utah say Silveria confessed to the April 1995 stabbing death of hobo Roger Lee Bowman, 28, in Salt Lake City and is suspected in the July 1992 death of Darren R. Miller, 29, who was found beaten to death in a sleeping bag alongside railroad tracks in Grand County.
One of Silveria's letters read: "When I went into a rage and I killed these people . . . I took something from 'em and put it in my bag. When I woke up . . . my hands hurt really bad, so I write in my journal and then I read the Bible."
Schlichting, 31, was in an adjacent cell on a probation violation during Silveria's brief stay in Auburn. He befriended and communicated with the accused killer, collecting documents police insist connect Silveria to the murders, court records show.
No arrests were made in connection with the searches.
According to an affidavit filed in court Wednesday by a Salem, Ore., police detective, Schlichting voluntarily turned over 15 pages of writings and copies of two drawings by Silveria in May but was withholding other documents, perhaps "for their monetary value."
Attached to the affidavit were copies of the 17 pages Schlichting originally provided and the transcript of a telephone interview he had with an Albany police officer.
The affidavit also said Schlichting claimed that a TV producer offered him $25,000 for Silveria's original letters.
Silveria's signed letters were filled with references to God and the Bible.
"I am sick and my only prayer is God will forgive me," he wrote on one note.
Silveria has told detectives he used birth certificates, Social Security cards and the names of his victims to obtain food stamps and other public assistance.
Silveria was arrested March 2 and was later sent to Oregon. He is being held in Marion County without bail on aggravated murder and robbery charges.