Suspect in Serial NorCal Rape Cases Arrested in Berkeley

Roy Charles Waller has worked at UC Berkeley as a safety specialist for 25 years, and was arrested this week after a DNA test allegedly connected him to the crimes.

Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn speaks at a press conference Friday, Sept. 21, 2018.

Authorities in Sacramento today announced a major break in a serial rape case that rocked Northern California in the 1990s and early 2000s. An arrest has been made in connection with a man known in police circles as the “NorCal Rapist,” according to Sacramento District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert and Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn.

Roy Charles Waller, a 58-year-old married Benicia resident employed at UC Berkeley, was arrested on his way to work. Authorities say he’d had the same job for the last 25 years. A Google search showed a Roy Charles employed as a safety specialist at the UC Berkeley Office of Environment, Health, and Safety.

The suspect, Roy Charles Waller.

At a press conference Friday, Schubert said that the answer has always been in the DNA.

“I have often said in my career that DNA is the silent witness to the truth,” Schubert said. “Through an incredible partnership and science and passionate police work the answer that many have waited for for so long has come to us in the past 10 days. ”

The DNA collected in the case came from a Chico victim, who stabbed her assailant in the arm during an attack. The link was made through genetic genealogy, similar to the Golden State Killer case.

The NorCal rapist was active from 1991 to at least 2006, with victims reporting attacks in Davis, Sacramento, Chico, Rohnert Park, Woodland, and Martinez. He would enter homes late at night, sometimes waking victims before physically overcoming them. Women reported that he would bind and repeatedly sexually assault them, occasionally ransacking their homes or driving them to ATMs to withdraw money. 

His victims were often small Asian women in their 20s and 30s. Although many of his victims were blindfolded, one identified him as a white man in his late 30s, with a pronounced belly. 

“Today we justice to not only the victims but all the communities he impacted,” said Hahn. “There’s one less dangerous predator on our streets this morning.”

Waller is being held without bail and faces 12 counts of forcible sexual assault. If convicted, he could serve life in prison. He will be arraigned on Monday. 

If you believe you were a victim of the NorCal rapist, you can call the crime tip number 916-808-1SPD or 707-584-TIPS.


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