‘Golden State Killer’ victims, family members face suspect in courtroom
Sacramento Police Department(LOS ANGELES) — The daughter of a man who was allegedly murdered by the “Golden State Killer” came face-to-face with the suspected serial rapist and killer for the first time in court Monday.
Jennifer Carole, whose father and stepmother Lyman and Charlene Smith were bludgeoned to death in 1980 in Ventura County, noted that the suspected killer “looked just like an old man.”
“From his orange Crocs to his orange outfit, his shoulders are sagging, he had whiskers on his face,” Carole told ABC News after court.
“He looked incredibly ordinary, which I think is the part that all of us are struggling with,” she said. “From the outside he looks particularly ordinary and yet we know on the inside there’s a monster there.”
Joseph DeAngelo, 72, was arrested in the cold case killings last month and has since been charged with 12 counts of murder: two in Sacramento County, two in Ventura County, four in Orange County and four in Santa Barbara County.
DeAngelo, who showed no expression at today’s brief hearing, only spoke to his public defender.
Carole said DeAngelo “didn’t have the courage to face his accusers — he didn’t look our way once.”
“I wouldn’t expect him to,” she added.
DeAngelo was unshackled in court today and appeared to be standing. At his first hearing he was in a wheelchair.
“I was happy that he was standing up, because he should be standing up for this,” Carole said.
Carole said she came to court today not only to see DeAngelo, but also to show support for the other family members and survivors.
“I was glad to be holding the hand of one of the rape survivors,” she said. “It felt good to be together and ready to fight this guy.”
The identity of the suspected “Golden State Killer” was a mystery for decades. Twelve people were murdered and 50 raped throughout California from 1976 to 1986.
It was DNA from Charlene Smith’s rape kit that investigators plugged into a genealogy database that led authorities to identify DeAngelo as a suspect.
DeAngelo returns to court on May 29.
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