A former California cop was arrested and outed Wednesday as the infamous Golden State Killer — the fiend who murdered at least 12 people and raped dozens of women in the 1970s and ’80s and whose crimes were chronicled in the recent best-selling true-crime book “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark,” authorities said.
Officials said they nailed ex-Auburn and former Exeter police Officer Joseph James DeAngelo Jr., now 72, by putting him under surveillance a few days ago and getting “discarded DNA” from him — which they then linked to the horrific crime spree.
“James DeAngelo has been called a lot of things by law enforcement. He’s been called the East Side Rapist; the Visalia Ransacker. The Original Night Stalker. The Golden State Killer. Today, it’s our pleasure to call him defendant,” crowed Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas.
FBI and California officials last year renewed their search for the suspect dubbed the East Area Rapist and announced a $50,000 reward for his arrest and conviction. He’s linked to more than 175 crimes in all between 1976 and 1986.
A woman who was sexually assaulted by a man believed to be the East Area Rapist in 1976 and now lives in South Carolina tells The Island Packet newspaper Wednesday that she has been contacted by two detectives about an arrest.
Law enforcement matched the DNA material discarded by the ex-cop to material collected decades ago, authorities said. The former worked as a cop in the Exeter Police Department from 1973 to 1976 and then in Exeter’s from 1976 until 1979, when he was fired for shoplifting a hammer and a can of dog repellent, the New York Post reports.
“Very possibly he was committing the crimes while he was a police officer. We’re looking into whether he was doing it while on the job,” a Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department spokesman said at a press conference Wednesday.
DeAngelo, a longtime resident of Sacramento, was arrested after a renewed push into the horrifying unsolved case — amid the release two months ago of the riveting book, which was penned by Michelle McNamara, comedian Patton Oswalt’s late wife. He has also been known as the Diamond Knot Killer.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
April 25th, 2018