US 'Golden State Killer' pleads guilty to multiple murders

'Golden State Killer' suspect pleads guilty to murder in California

'Golden State Killer' suspect pleads guilty to murder in California

An elderly ex-policeman confessed on Monday to being the violent serial prowler known as the "Golden State Killer," pleading guilty to 13 murders as well as 13 counts of kidnapping in a deal with us prosecutors meant to spare him the death penalty.

Under the terms of the plea deal, as outlined by prosecutors and a judge at the hearing, DeAngelo will face a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Camera IconDave Domingo, left, and his sister, Debbi Domingo McMullan, listen as Joseph James DeAngelo is charged with the 1981 murder of their mother, Cheri Domingo, in Sacramento Superior Court in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, June 29, 2020.

Besides the 13 murders and kidnappings, prosecutors said DeAngelo was tied to almost 50 rapes and more than 120 home invasions - mostly in and around Sacramento, the eastern San Francisco Bay area and Southern California.

"His monikers reflect the sweeping geographical impact of his crimes: the Visalia Ransacker, the East Area Rapist, the Original Night Stalker and the Golden State Killer", said Thienvu Ho, Sacramento County Assistant Chief District Attorney.

In 2018, prosecutors from Sacramento, Contra Costa, Orange, Santa Barbara, Tulare and Ventura counties filed 26 charges against DeAngelo and consolidated the cases against him. He was kicked off of the Auburn Police Department force in 1979 after he was caught shoplifting. But no matter the Golden State Killer's physical condition, he's not going to ever get out of custody.

The statute of limitations for the rapes have expired, but all offences were read out by prosecutors in a hearing that stretched over seven grisly hours.

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According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the "Golden State Killer" would often "attack couples, tie up both victims, rape the female, and then murder them".

Investigators identified him using a then-novel investigative technique known as genetic genealogy that combines DNA analysis with genealogical research.

They then gathered DeAngelo's DNA on the handle of a auto door and a tissue in his garbage can, which matched the DNA from the crime scenes.

DeAngelo was arrested in 2018 with the help of groundbreaking DNA technology.

He also replied "I admit" to successive allegations of rape, robbery, weapon offenses and other crimes as prosecutors took turns presenting "factual-basis" statements graphically detailing every murder, sexual assault and home invasion with which DeAngelo was accused.

While sparing the defendant from a potential death sentence, the deal also saves a dwindling number of aging survivors, victims' families, witnesses and law enforcement officers involved in the case from prolonged legal proceedings, prosecutors said.

Monday's court hearing will be held at a California State University-Sacramento ballroom.

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