Patton Oswalt’s late wife may have solved one of the biggest true crime cases of the modern era, two years after her death. Sacramento Police announced the arrest of a suspect known as “the Golden State Killer,” “the East Area Rapist,” and “the Original Night Stalker,” as 72-year -old Citrus Heights resident Joseph James DeAngelo was arrested Tuesday night on murder charges. All told, DeAngelo may have committed as many as 12 murders and 50 rapes in the 1970s and 80s.
Update: DeAngelo was arrested on two counts of murder on a warrant from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department. But at a Wednesday press conference, 10 different California district attorneys connected him with crimes committed in their counties. DeAngelo is suspected of as many as 14 rapes in the Bay Area between 1976 and 1986.
Nancy O’Malley of Alameda County DA’s office REMINDING EVERYONE of the insane of amount of rape kits that have gone untested. DNA FROM A RAPE KIT GOT THE #GoldenStateKiller nearly 40 yrs later. #EndtheBacklog #DNAday2018 #EastAreaRapist pic.twitter.com/yFCwlyNBEZ
— alex shannon (@aluxshan) April 25, 2018
Patton Oswalt chimes in above because his late wife Michelle McNamara, who passed away nearly two years ago to this exact day, literally wrote the book on this case. McNamara’s book I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer was just published in February, and may have resulted in what the Sacramento Bee calls a “renewed push of the investigation by the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department and District Attorney” to solve the case.
And the case is brutal, though long forgotten by many modern-day Californians. “Authorities believe he raped 37 people in the Sacramento area and Central Valley and killed two between 1976 and 1978,” the Bee reports. “From there, authorities believe, he moved on to the the Bay Area and Southern California.”
DNA matches also link the suspect to as many as a dozen more rapes and murders statewide.
SF Weekly will update this post with more information when announced by Sacramento Police. In the meanwhile, Patton Oswalt’s Twitter account is a pretty engaging thing to be following right now.