SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The convicted serial killer and rapist known as the Golden State Killer has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
A judge handed down the multiple life sentences to Joseph James DeAngelo on Friday after four days of victim statements, during which dozens of survivors and family members of victims told their stories before the assailant who eluded investigators for decades.
The former police officer, now 74, pleaded guilty in June to 13 murders and 13 rape-related charges stemming from crimes in the 1970s and 1980s.
The guilty plea was part of a deal that spared DeAngelo from the death penalty.
DeAngelo, also known as the East Area Rapist, publicly admitted to dozens more sexual assaults for which the statute of limitations had expired.
Prosecutors called his more than decade-long spate of crime “simply staggering,” encompassing 87 victims in 11 California counties.
Investigators were able to identify DeAngelo as the killer and arrest him in 2018 using a new method of DNA tracing that involves using genealogy websites to build a family tree and narrow down suspects.
Before receiving his sentence, DeAngelo apologized in court for what he has done.
"I listened to all your statements, each one of them. And I am really sorry to everyone I have hurt," he said. Thank you, your honor."