One man knew her. The other did not. One learned about her death from a TV news reporter. The other held the young woman as she bled.
Both men on Monday told striking and heart-wrenching stories about the death of Robin Blasnek, the Mesa woman believed to be the final victim of the Serial Shooters.
The 22-year-old was killed by a shotgun blast as she walked by herself down a darkened Mesa street on July 30, 2006.
Her death came just days before two people, Dale Hausner and Samuel Dieteman, were arrested at an apartment a short distance from the spot where she died.
Authorities now say the men were responsible for a 14-month string of shootings that left eight people dead and numerous others wounded.
Hausner is on trial — charged with eight murders and numerous other crimes — in Maricopa County Superior Court in downtown Phoenix, where two witnesses took the stand Monday morning to tell of Blasnek’s dying moments.
Here are their stories:
Rudy Reyes expected his friend, Robin, to arrive any minute. It was late at night, and she had called saying she had just been arguing with her boyfriend and needed someone to talk to.
Though it was dark, the young woman decided to walk the short distance from her house to the place near Gilbert Road and Grandview Street in Mesa where Reyes was living.
The two chatted on their cell phones as she walked, but as she was getting close, Reyes said, they decided to hang up. “She was just like, ‘I’m right down the street,’ ” Reyes said. “She said she was going to call me when she was at the door.”
In the minutes that followed, Reyes heard a loud bang down the street, somewhere in the direction of Gilbert Road, just east of his home.
He didn’t know what to think of the sound and sort of shrugged it off, he said. “It just flew right past me.”
A few moments after the bang, Robin’s name and number showed up on his caller ID, and he thought she was probably at his front door.
He answered the phone, but no one was on the other end. “Then it just hung up,” Reyes said.
Robin never arrived. Eventually, Reyes went to bed and fell asleep, not knowing what had happened to his friend.
The next morning, a reporter from KNXV-TV (Channel 15) called his house and broke the news to him. Robin was dead.
When Charles Chase first heard the bang, he went outside to investigate.
He remembered thinking that it was either a car backfiring or a gunshot. Either way, he wanted to find out what was happening just north of his house, at the corner of Gilbert and Grandview.
“When I stepped outside of the door and looked in that direction, I noticed a girl kneeling on the corner of the street,” Chase said. “I went over to see what was going on.”
“I was shot,” the young woman told him, crouching on the sidewalk.
He leaned down to steady her as she began to fall toward the concrete. Chase reached his arm around the young woman’s body and held onto her.
“When I pulled my hand away, it was covered in blood,” Chase said.
As they knelt there together, the young woman did not appear to be in pain. She was not crying, but she was not saying much, either.
He looked down and saw that she was wearing slippers and pajamas. Her cell phone was lying on the ground.
As he held the injured woman, Chase’s wife and children came out of the house to help. One of his sons called 911 as his wife fetched a blanket to pad the young woman against the concrete sidewalk.
They laid her down on it while emergency crews were on their way. The woman began to breathe heavily.
Then, she began to fade.
“She kind of closed her eyes after that,” Chase said. “I don’t remember her opening her eyes again. And she didn’t say anything after that.”