Skip to Content

LA Times: Suspected Golden State Killer to plead guilty

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The man accused of nearly two decades of heinous crimes committed across the state of California is expected to accept a deal that will spare him the death penalty in exchange for a guilty plea, according to the Los Angeles Times.

According to the Times, Joseph James DeAngelo Jr., 74, is set to enter a guilty plea to 13 murders and kidnapping charges in a plea deal that is expected to spare him from facing the death penalty.

Branded the Golden State Killer, DeAngelo is accused of 13 murders and dozens of rapes in California in the '70s and '80s.

Among his 13 victims, DeAngelo is accused of killing Robert Offerman and Debra Manning in Goleta in 1979, as well as Cheri Domingo and Gregory Sanchez in Goleta in 1981. He's also been charged with killing Charlene and Lyman Smith in Ventura County in 1980.

Many sources who were notified about the legal arrangement said they were specifically required to not disclose the deal to the media. Nor are any legal motions outlining the plea deal required to be filed in court prior to the June 29 court date. 

The Los Angeles Times also reports that DeAngelo has agreed to admit to additional crimes for which he has not yet been charged, including rapes in which the statute of limitations has expired.

The Golden State Killer had three prolific careers in crime, including burglaries in and around Visalia where he was known as the Visalia Ransacker, rapes in the Sacramento area where he was known as the East Area Rapist, and murders in central and southern California where he was branded the Original Night Stalker. In 2016, the rapes and murders were connected through DNA evidence.

"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," wrote Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley.

"Victims of a crime are entitled to finality in their criminal cases, as well as the expectation that the person convicted of committing the crime will be punished by the courts of the State of California. Victims and their loved ones have a right to be heard, and all six District Attorney’s Offices involved in the prosecution of People v. DeAngelo are working closely with the victims in this case to ensure their statements are considered by the Court prior to sentencing," wrote Ventura County District Attorney Gregory D. Totten in a statement released to the Media.

Totten also explained how despite this possible plea deal it's still an active investigation. "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," wrote Totten.

DeAngelo is expected to submit his plea in Sacramento County on June 29.

Article Topic Follows: California

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo

News Channel 3-12

Email the News Channel 3-12 Team


News Channel 3-12 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content