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Golden State Killer Suspect Lived With Daughter and Granddaughter, Retired Two Weeks Ago


Joseph James DeAngelo Golden State Killer mugshot arrest

A 72-year-old suspect known as the East Area Rapist or the Golden State Killer, believed to have committed at least 45 rapes, 12 murders and numerous burglaries in California between 1976 and 1986 has been arrested, this after police used discarded DNA evidence to tie him to two murders.

Now we know the face of the suspect and a little bit more about what made Joseph James DeAngelo relatively invisible in his Citrus Heights neighborhood.

Details reported by The Sacramento Bee about the suspect were published earlier Wednesday, and they reveal that DeAngelo is divorced, that he lived with a daughter and granddaughter, that he went by “Joe,” and that he said he just retired two weeks ago.

If convicted, DeAngelo’s retirement won’t be spent fishing, which neighbors said he planned to do a lot of.

Cory Harvey lives one door over from DeAngelo, and was dumbfounded by the revelation that she was living next to a person believed to be the Golden State Killer.

She gave details about family members DeAngelo lived with, plus a conversation with DeAngelo he and her husband had about his apparent retirement plans.

DeAngelo was described as a generally good neighbor with alarming outbursts of anger — referred to as “quirkiness of getting mad.” DeAngelo was said to swear loudly in front of his garage, but was otherwise helpful with neighborly things like paying for a new fence.

Another neighbor who lived down the street, Paul Sanchietti, regarded DeAngelo as “the odd neighbor.” He said when he “was aggravated or upset, his voice would carry, his swearing was alarming.”

“But he seemed to calm down in the last few years,” Sanchietti would add.

DeAngelo, it has also been revealed, used to be a police officer and was also a Vietnam veteran. 

Another neighbor, Kevin Tapia, recalled “a lot of verbal altercations with my parents.”

DeAngelo was kicked off the Auburn Police Department force in 1979 after he was caught shoplifting.

What he has been doing ever since, whether criminal in nature or a donning of the mask of normalcy, will certainly continue to emerge in more detail in the coming days.

[Image via Sacramento Sheriff’s Office]

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Matt Naham is the Senior A.M. Editor of Law&Crime.