Sacramento District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert and Sheriff Scott Jones announced that Joseph James DeAngelo, 72, a former police officer in the Sacramento area, was arrested as the prime suspect in the East Area Rapist/Original Nightstalker/Golden State Killer case.
DeAngelo is accused of having committed at least 12 killings and perhaps 50 rapes across California in the 1970s and 1980s, according to KTLA. The atrocities included allegedly killing two victims in Irvine. Manuela Whitthuhn was killed in Irvine in 1981. Five years later in 1986, Janelle Cruz was beaten to death in her parent’s home, in Irvine.
DeAngelo, 72, was arrested after investigators matched a discarded DNA sample from his home to evidence collected at some of the crimes. He had already been under surveillance according to news reports.
Bruce Harrington, brother of Golden State Killer murder victims Keith and Patrice Harrington, who were beaten to death in their Dana Point home on Aug. 19, 1980, also spoke at today’s news conference. In November 2004, OCDA Tony Rackauckas and Harrington worked together to pass voter initiative Proposition 69, which expanded California’s DNA database to include every convicted felon in the state, according to the OCDA.
Unfortunately Prop. 47 rolled back the ability to collect DNA from suspects as many felonies became misdemeanors. There are efforts underway in Sacramento to correct this via a ballot measure in the November, 2018 election.