The man suspected of being the "Golden State Killer," pleaded guilty to 13 counts of first-degree murder in addition to several other charges, for a string of grisly crimes committed in the 1970s and 1980s. Former police officer Joseph DeAngelo, 74, agreed to plead guilty to the crimes in exchange for avoiding the death penalty. According to Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Amy Holliday, DeAngelo also admitted to crimes he hadn't been charged for but where the statute of limitations have passed.
Assistant Chief Deputy District Attorney Thien Ho told reporters the scope of DeAngelo's crimes are "simply staggering, encompassing 13 known murders and almost 50 rapes between 1975 and 1986." Ho continued, "His monikers reflect the sweeping geographical impact of his crime," adding, "Each time, he escaped, slipping away silently into the night, leaving communities terrified for years."
DeAngelo was the subject of an HBO documentary entitled, "I'll Be Gone in the Dark" which aired on Sunday. He is awaiting sentencing where he will receive life without the possibility of parole for his guilty plea.
Just a few weeks ago, the district attorneys involved in the case issued a joint statement, that read, in part: "It was not until the advent of Investigative Genetic Genealogy that we were able to successfully identify DeAngelo as the suspect in a series of rapes, burglaries, and murders that spanned 11 counties over more than a decade." It was also hinted that the prosecution team struck a plea in the statement. "We have a moral and ethical responsibility to consider any offer from the defense, given the massive scope of the case, the advanced age of many of the victims and witnesses, and our inherent obligations to the victims."
The prosecution also said DeAngelo is expected to be confronted by surviving victims and families of deceased victims prior to his sentencing.