Gardner's "Flash Of Rage"

By Tony Shin
|  Saturday, May 15, 2010  |  Updated 9:44 AM PDT
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Victim Who Got Away Enrages Gardner

NBCSanDiego

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Victim Who Got Away Enrages Gardner

Double murderer John Gardner flashed with anger after listening to Candice Moncayo's witness impact statement.
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It was the moment that may have defined John Gardner's true character.  It wasn't the tears that drenched his face as he listened to family members talk about the two young lives he savagely took away.

It was the moment when surviving victim Candice Moncayo needled Gardner about his attack on her last December.  Moncayo was jogging along a trail near Lake Hodges when Gardner jumped her and tried to rape her.  

But Moncayo was able to escape in part because she claims she struck Gardner in the nose before running to safety.

She ended her victim's impact statement by saying she wanted to "ask him how his nose is."

That comment appeared to set Gardner off.  He lifted his head to reveal an angry look on his face.  Gardner's lawyers turned to him and appeared to tell him to calm down.  He replied,"She didn't hit me."

Gardner's temper continued to boil as a sheriff's deputy bent down to make sure he didn't get out of control.  "She's a liar,"Gardner said to his attorney.  "She did that for the publicity."

Gardner eventually calmed down about a minute  later.

Dr. Clark Smith, a San Diego psychiatrist said that Gardner's reaction was telling because it revealed the real John Gardner.

"Somebody who's completely self-centered,"Smith said.  "Somebody who really doesn't have any empathy for anyone else but cares a whole lot about themselves."

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