This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Utah State Prison inmate Stephen Van Dam, serving a life sentence for rape, died Sunday at University Hospital from natural causes.
Van Dam, 63, had numerous physical ailments and had been treated in the prison infirmary and at the hospital during the past year.
Van Dam, then 33, already had a criminal history when he was convicted in 1983 on multiple counts of aggravated sexual assault and confessed to at least 17 other attacks. At one point, he escaped but was returned to prison in 1985.
In 1993, Van Dam appeared before the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole and was erroneously given a parole date of January 1996; that was revoked and he was given a rehearing date of 2003 and then 2010. After that hearing, the board gave Van Dam a natural life sentence, citing his history and the psychological damage to his numerous victims. Van Dam appealed the decision and that case was still pending in state court.