The suspected Golden State Killer, Joseph James DeAngelo, has pleaded guilty to numerous charges, including 13 counts of first-degree murder.
DeAngelo is also accused of committing more than 50 rapes during his killing spree between 1975 and 1986.
Here's what you need to know about the hearing:
- The charges: The 74-year-old pleaded guilty to 13 counts of first-degree murder and special circumstances (including murder committed during burglaries and rapes), as well as 13 counts of kidnapping. He also informally admitted to numerous other crimes, including rape.
- The plea deal: Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Amy Holliday said he agreed to plead guilty to all charges to avoid the death penalty. DeAngelo faces 11 consecutive terms of life without parole, with 15 concurrent life sentences and additional time for weapons charges. Superior Court Judge Michael Bowman noted that sentence is only a recommendation, and DeAngelo will be sentenced at a later date.
- About the hearing: The defendant appeared before the judge at the Sacramento State University Union Ballroom, a venue chosen to allow for social distancing. Dressed in a prison jumpsuit and appearing frail, DeAngelo and his defense team wore clear plastic face guards as they sat on a dais to Bowman's left.