Palm Beach County, Fla., Court Judge Laura Johnson was in college the night a serial killer attacked. It changed her life, and her career path.
Johnson was the last person known to have entered the Tri Delta sorority house in Tallahassee on the night in 1978 when Ted Bundy slipped into the nearby Chi Omega house to kill two female Florida State University students.
She knew both victims.
"I was identified as the last person to come into my sorority house," she said. "I was woken up by the police and interviewed by the police that morning."
She was a sophomore finance major.
"I didn't have any intention of going to law school," she said. But the murders "changed our way of life at FSU. ... I followed that case, day by day by day by day. I lived through the horror of it, and I just became interested in the whole process and the whole way it played out."
Even then, though, she "anticipated more of a career on the non-litigation side."
Right out of law school, she landed a job doing criminal appeals in the attorney general's office. Four months later she was recruited to do the same thing at the Palm Beach state attorney's office. "And I was hooked."
She stayed as a prosecutor for 19 years.