The former California police officer who is accused of killing 13 people and more than 50 rapes as the Golden State Killer appeared in court on Monday, where he entered a guilty plea.
Joseph DeAngelo appeared before Superior Court Judge Michael Bowman at the Sacramento State University Ballroom, which allowed for social distancing, CNN reports.
DeAngelo agreed to plead guilty to all 13 counts of first-degree murder, which will allow him to escape the death penalty, according to Deputy District Attorney Amy Holliday. DeAngelo said, “I admit to all the uncharged offenses that have been alleged,” in regard to uncharged offenses in seven other counties as part of the plea.
He will serve 11 consecutive life sentences without parole and 15 concurrent life sentences and additional time for weapons charges. In the guilty plea, the right to appeal will be waived. The plea eliminates the need for a trial and will spare any witnesses the need to testify.
” The scope of Joseph DeAngelo’s’ crime spree is simply staggering, encompassing 13 known murders and almost 50 rapes between 1975 and 1986,” the prosecutor said, highlighting his nicknames, including “Visalia Ransacker, “East Area Rapist, “The Original Night Stalker” and the” Golden State Killer.” “For over 40 years, the biggest question remained unanswered, who was the serial killer and rapist,” the attorney said.
DeAngelo was arrested for the crimes in 2018 when crime scene DNA was compared with DNA on the open-source genealogy website GEDMatch. DeAngelo’s name emerged as a possible suspect, and officials were able to gather his DNA on a car door handle and a tissue from his garbage can. The DNA matched the DNA from the crime scenes.