His own father says Rex Krebs is a 'demon seed'

ppemberton@thetribunenews.comFebruary 10, 2010 

In the weeks after Rachel Newhouse disappeared, Allan Krebs says he remembers seeing missing-person fliers featuring her photo.

During a visit to San Luis Obispo County, Allan Krebs said his son, Rex, even asked him about the fliers.

"He come up to me one time and he said, 'What kind of guys do that, Dad?' And I said, 'A no-good, piece-of- s---, son of a bitch.' And he said, 'Yeah, I guess you're right.' "

Allan Krebs didn't know it at the time, but his son had abducted and murdered Newhouse, a 20-year-old Cal Poly student, in November 1998.

"He told me later on the phone, after he'd got arrested, that he was going to tell me," Allan Krebs said in a recent phone interview from his home in Idaho. "But when he got that answer from me, he didn't."

Not long after Allan Krebs' visit ended, Rex Krebs struck again, abducting and killing Aundria Crawford, a 20-year-old Cuesta College student.

While Allan Krebs said he feels betrayed by his son, his son's defense team painted the elder Krebs as the monster who created the monster. The defense attorneys said years of physical abuse by his father -- and neglect by an alcoholic mother who left him -- caused Rex Krebs to develop twisted fantasies.

Even the lead prosecutor thought the father mistreated his son.

"His father was one of the meanest guys on the planet -- and took it out on his son," said then-Deputy District Attorney John Trice.

Krebs' mother also blames Rex's father -- her ex-husband -- who has a long criminal rap sheet of his own. According to court records, Allan Krebs has convictions for drug dealing and rape.

"Everybody that knows us here knows exactly where it came from," said Connie Ridley.

Yet, Allan Krebs -- who has not previously talked about the case publicly -- said he was an easy scapegoat.

"I was locked up, so I made a perfect target."

Allan Krebs was serving time for a drug offense when his son stood trial.

If there's anyone to blame for Rex Krebs' crimes, he said, it's the man who committed them.

"Rex and I had a pretty rocky relationship, and, no, I wasn't a perfect dad," he said. "But he was a very hard kid to raise."

Demon seed?

While the defense team argued that the evil side of Rex Krebs was instilled in him, his father said it was innate.

"He comes out of that Dean Koontz book, 'Demon Seed,' " he said. "I read that book, and I said: 'Rex.' "

From an early age, he said, Krebs was peeping in windows.

"Rex was oversexed from the time he was 5 or 6," he said.

He also said his son was a cunning thief.

"When he was a kid, he lied and stole from me," he said. "Every time he was ever corrected -- 'Why'd you do that, Rex?' -- he'd say, 'I thought I might get away with it.' You could always hear the gears working in his head about how he was going to do it better next time."

Once, Allan Krebs said, he and his wife got counseling for their son. But when the father felt the counseling was focusing on him, Allan Krebs said, he bailed.

"They wouldn't do it unless I was there," he said. "And I figured, oh, they're counseling me, not him. And I thought, sh--, I'm not the one that's window-peeping."

A violent history

While Rex Krebs' mother said she was shocked to learn her son had killed people, murder seemed to be a way of life in the Krebs family.

Allan Krebs had a brother and a sister who were murdered in separate incidents when Rex was a child. Another brother shot and killed a man during a road-rage shootout. And, according to court records, Allan Krebs himself was once a suspect -- though never charged -- in the murder of a prostitute.

"His father's side of the family -- that's pretty much what they are," Ridley said.

Allan Krebs said he did spank his children, but he denies physically abusing them. "Did I come home and beat them? Never," he said. "In general, people that beat up on little kids are cowards. And I've never been called a coward to my face. I've been called a lot of things to my back."

When asked about an incident when Rex was 17, Allan Krebs admitted he punched his son. But he said he can't remember the details.

"We're talking so far back, it's hard to remember it all," he said. "I even asked God to help me to forget it all."

At trial, Rex Krebs' sister said Allan Krebs beat his son bloody.

While the defense blamed Rex Krebs' sexual disorder on his childhood, his father wondered, "If he hated me so bad, why the hell didn't he kill me when I was down there?"

One good visit

During his visit to San Luis Obispo County in early 1999, Allan Krebs said he and his son got along well.

"For whatever reason, I knew I had to go see him," he said. "And so I went down, and we had a great week. That was the only week we ever got along."

In letters from San Luis Obispo County Jail, Rex Krebs said he did try to reach out to his father.

"I tried so hard to express to you what was wrong with me whenever you came down to visit," he wrote. "And I know you were listening. I just couldn't say it plain enough."

Yet, Allan Krebs doesn't think his son regrets what he did.

"Everybody's got fantasies, good or bad," he said. "He's one of those people that lives his out -- and his are on the dark side."

Today, both Ridley and Allan Krebs still live near Rex Krebs' childhood home. Ridley said she's been sober for 10 years. Allan now works at a local Wal- Mart.

While Ridley is in contact with her son, Allan Krebs -- who is still upset with his portrayal in court -- hasn't been in touch with him since the trial.

Had his son not been caught, Allan Krebs said, he's sure he would have killed again. Ever since Rex was a kid, he said, he has schemed to do bad things.

"There's not a straight bone in that boy's body."

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