There may be no more infamous criminal in recent Oregon history than Diane Downs.
She was convicted in 1984 of shooting three of her children, killing one of them. Downs later escaped briefly from prison and was made (more) infamous by "Small Sacrifices" a 1987 best-seller written by Ann Rule and a 1989 TV movie starring Farrah Fawcett.
After Downs' conviction but before her sentencing, Downs gave birth to a baby, who was taken from her by state authorities and adopted.
Until now, that baby's identity remained a closely guarded secret
. Now comes a blockbuster story
about the now-adult woman. The story, titled “'I Found Out My Mother Was a Killer': The Rebecca Babcock Story" carries bylines familiar to media watchers—veteran Oregonian
reporter Lisa Lednicer and her co-author, former KATU newsman Eric Mason. (Mason, now a Salem private investigator, covered the Downs trial in 1984.) In the article, Babcock says she does not know the identity of her biological father.
Suprisingly, the story appears not in the state's largest daily but in Glamour
magazine. It's unusual but not unheard of for Oregonian
staff reporters to write for other publications. Lednicer and Oregonian
managing editor Therese Bottomly did not immediately respond to calls seeking comment.
Downs, currently serving her sentence in California, was denied parole