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On November 4th 2018, the team of Small Town Dicks appeared in their first ever live show at the Death Becomes Us true crime festival. While Detectives Dan and Dave remained concealed off-stage on mics, Yeardley and Zibby sat down with investigator Paul Holes to interview him on his 24 yearlong investigation into the Golden State Killer case. The Golden State Killer was one of the most prolific predators in U.S. history. He was a serial killer, rapist, and burglar who committed at least 13 murders, more than 50 rapes, and over 100 burglaries in California from 1974 to 1986. This is a recording of that live show which was produced by D.C.’s Brightest Young Things and held at the Lisner Auditorium in Washington D.C.

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Paul:  Hey Small Town Fam, this is Paul Holes. Make sure you subscribe to The Briefing Room with Detectives Dan and Dave. Season two is out now. Subscribe now and thanks.

Zibby:  On November 4, 2018, the cast of Small Town Dicks was invited to participate in the True Crime Festival Death Becomes Us in Washington DC. The weekend long event was produced by DC’s Brightest Young Things, and amongst the guests were some of our favorite true crime legends, such as Joe Kenda of Homicide Hunter, John Douglas of Mindhunter, and the one and only Paul Holes, most famously known for solving the Golden State Killer case earlier this year. Needless to say, we were very honored to be a part of the festival.

 And absolutely elated when were asked if we’d like to be the ones to interview Paul Holes on stage in front of a live audience. The episode you’re about to hear is a live recording of just that, our first live appearance at Small Town Dicks interviewing Paul Holes about his 24-year long investigation of the man who would become known as the Golden State Killer. Put your FOMO away, Small Town Fam. Rest assured, no one in the audience got to lay eyes on Detectives Dan and Dave. While still participating in the show, the detectives remained concealed backstage and chimed in via microphone. Please note that this episode differs from our usual sound and storytelling format. As such, consider this more of a bonus episode, a small but fascinating glimpse into the brilliant mind of Investigator Paul Holes.

 And we are very pleased to announce that Investigator Paul will return to our show in Season 4 to share some of his lesser known cases with us, Small Town Dick style. We can’t wait.

Yeardley:  The Golden State Killer was one of the most prolific predators in US history. But before DNA enabled law enforcement to confirm his identity and connect hundreds of dots from over two decades of investigations that spanned the length of the State of California, each police agency thought it was looking for a unique individual, not one single predator. The saga began in April 1974 with the Visalia Ransacker, who committed over 120 burglaries and one murder in Visalia, California, a small city about 40 miles south of Fresno. The burglary stopped cold 20 months later, in December 1975, but police didn’t have a suspect in custody because the burglar had always been masked and had always gotten away.

Zibby:  Starting in June 1976 in a suburb near Sacramento, a city 200 miles North of Visalia, law enforcement found themselves hunting a prolific serial rapist. He became known as the east area rapist for his preferred geographical strike zone. After 18 months, he moved out of the Sacramento area, striking in cities all over northern California before abruptly stopping in July of 1979. He was responsible for over 50 reported rapes and famously went from targeting women who were home alone to choosing households that had a male and female at home. Once there, the suspect would tie both victims up, stack dishes on the back of the male victim, rape the female in front of him, and threaten to kill the woman if any dishes fell off the man’s back.

Yeardley:  Three months later, in October 1979, police agencies in Santa Barbara and Irvine, California, two cities which are hundreds of miles south of Sacramento, found themselves investigating a serial killer who seemed to be toggling between the two locations. They named their suspect both The Original Night Stalker and the Golden State Killer, and they tracked his killing spree for the next seven years. When it appeared to end in May 1986, as suddenly as it had begun. On April 24, 2018, DNA results led to the arrest of 72-year-old Joseph James DeAngelo, also known as the Golden State Killer and The Original Night Stalker and The East Area Rapist and The Visalia Ransacker.

[Small Town Dicks theme]

Host:  I would like to welcome to the stage Yeardley Smith and Zibby Allen.

[cheers and applause]

Zibby Allen:  Hi, you guys.

Yeardley:  Hot damn.


Yeardley:  I’m Yeardley.

Zibby:  And I’m Zibby. And you guys, Dan and Dave are here. You can’t see them. They are the faceless detectives. So, they’re tucked away behind the curtain. Say hi, Dan and Dave.

Dan:  Hello, everyone. Dan here.

[cheers and applause]

Dave:  This is Dave. How’s everyone doing?

[applause and cheers]

Yeardley:  So, the reason that they’re still behind the curtain is because each case on our show is told by detective who actually worked it. We really wanted to go the distance to protect them as much as possible. So, we changed all the names, we change the places. We have tremendous reverence for the victims, but also for detectives who are telling these stories. So, in keeping with that premise, Dan and Dave agreed to sit backstage behind the magical curtain like Oz and still be a part of this conversation.

Zibby:  It’s going to be interesting because they’re going to chime in. And we have a special guest. I don’t know if you’ve heard, have you guys heard of this guy named Paul Holes? Can you even. You guys, I think he should come out here.

Yeardley:  I think he should.

[applause and cheers]

Video Presentation:  The outstanding work to bring resolution to this case was in part led by Paul Holes. An investigator on the case Paul Holes. From Contra Costa County, Paul Holes. Has investigated this case for over 24 years.

[applause and cheers]

Zibby:  Whoa. Welcome, Paul Holes. Just hug Paul holes.

Paul:  Thank you very much.

Zibby:  Seriously. Hi.

Paul:  Hi.

Yeardley:  We actually didn’t pick Paul Holes as the guy we got to interview. They said, you’re going to interview Paul Holes and-

Zibby:  We flipped out.

Paul:  Oh, come on.

Yeardley:  Any who, no pressure. So, Paul, I mean, I think you’ve had a pretty, I don’t know, relaxing, easy summer you haven’t been up to much. [Paul laughs] What’s up dude?

Paul:  It’s been an absolute whirlwind. Obviously, finding DeAngelo was a huge thing, and since that time, it’s just been constant. And it’s been good, but overwhelming at the same time.

Zibby:  Yeah, I’m sure. Have you guys heard of the Golden State Killer King, or you say you are coming to this fresh? Should we review?


Zibby:  Yeah, I mean, it really has been a whirlwind. Because this was when?

Paul:  It was in April.

Zibby:  April?

Paul:  Right.

Yeardley:  And I think one of the things that’s interesting is we know him as the Golden State Killer, but he also has two other monikers. He’s the Visalia Ransacker and he is The Original Night Stalker. And so, we live in Los Angeles. And so, I’d heard of The Original Night Stalker, but I hadn’t heard of the Visalia Ransacker, and I hadn’t really heard of The Golden State Killer. Even Dan and Dave, who are seasoned detectives can speak to that a tiny bit.

Dave:  Well, this is Dave, by the way. I had seen snippets about this case years ago, but it’s kind of funny. Dan and I were at Yeardley’s house last Thanksgiving, and we downloaded the case file series, the five-part series on the Golden State Killer and East Area Rapist. And we’re just sitting in the hot tub drinking wine and getting creeped out.

Zibby:  What a visual, you guys, because you don’t know what they look like. So that could mean so many things. [laughs]

Dave:  I had a wetsuit on. Dan was fully clothed. No worries. But that’s our introduction into this case and really getting into the details. And then, of course, Mr. Holes has been featured on numerous documentaries, rightfully. So, he did great work on this.

Paul:  Well, and I want to say, you’ve talked Visalia Ransacker, Original Night Stalker, Golden State Killer. For most of my career, I knew him as the East Area Rapist. And so that’s all I knew him as. And it wasn’t until we linked the sexual assaults in Northern California back in 2001, using DNA to the homicides down south, he was known as the East Area Rapist up in Northern California. He was known as the Original Night Stalker down in Southern California, but we didn’t know it was the same guy. And then the DNA made that link, and so that’s when I knew that the East Area Rapist had other names than just the East Area Rapist.

Yeardley:  We actually have a clip from your audiobook that illustrates that very point. So, this audiobook, by the way, the first chapter available for free on Audible. We got a tiny preview of it. And what I love about what they did with your audiobook, it’s not the audiobook that any of us knew even 10 years ago, where it’s just some dude reading the text. You have one of the sergeants, right?

Paul:  So, the narrator is Jim Clemente, who’s an ex-FBI profiler.

Yeardley:  Yes, exactly. So, we have Clemente reading the text, and then you have interspersed frequently these fantastic interviews with victims, some of the other investigators, and Paul as well. So, it’s really, really lively.

Paul:  In 2001, the crime lab had gotten the new DNA technology up and running, so I assigned it out to a DNA analyst, Mary Hong. I know you know Mary. Give her a call. I had talked to her back in 1997, and she’s got a case down there that she’s doing some DNA on. I just want to see, could this be the same guy? And when he left, I fully expected it would come back and we would have eliminated any potential connection to Mary’s Irvine cases. So, he leaves. I go to my office. I’m in my office probably for at least an hour, just doing the routine administrative work that I was stuck doing now in this management position. So, as I’m sitting there doing these administrative tasks, I sense a presence.

 And Dave has come back into my office, is standing in the doorway, and he said, well, I spoke with Mary, and we have the same DNA profile that she has in her homicide cases. And I just pushed back. I was like, “You’re kidding.” And he was like, “No, it’s the same.” He’s telling her, “This is the profile I have. At this marker I’ve got this type.” And Mary goes, “I’ve got that type.” And he says, “At this marker, I have this type.” And Mary goes, “I’ve got that type at that marker.” And they literally started to read to each other the profile. This was March of 2001. That’s when the East Area Rapist was identified as being the same offender that Southern California knew as the Original Night Stalker.

Zibby:  Whoa.

Yeardley:  What.


Paul:  Is that what I really sound like?

Yeardley:  Yes.

Zibby:  That’s the first time he’s heard this. [laughs] It’s weird to hear yourself, isn’t it?

Paul:  I never listened to myself. So that’s like, oh, okay.

Yeardley:  It’s awesome.

Zibby:  We all listen to you, and we love it. So, that’s a massive moment. What was that like for you?

Paul:  Well, at that point in time, you know, it’s an important part in the case because now you have 50 attacks in Northern California that are linked to six homicide cases with 10 victims. That’s huge. You’re now recognizing that this guy that I’ve been at that point in time, I had been involved in this case for seven years. I was like, “Wow, okay,” now we know that this guy is a serious offender. He’s attacked all the way across the state. We’ve got 56 cases that he’s done. We still don’t know who he is. But it was still just, this is another step in the process. And so, as exciting as it may have seemed now today, looking at what it was, it’s like, well, that’s interesting, but Southern California has all the homicide cases.

 So, my role at this point is supporting Southern California and an Investigator. Larry Pool with Orange County Sheriff’s Office was really the lead person down there. So, I’m talking to Larry Pool and saying, “What do you need? I’ve got all this stuff on who your guy is, who you thought is just a ghost,” because he had victims that were killed and couldn’t tell him who killed them. But I have 50 attacks where the victims were able to say, a masked man came into my house and he said, “Do what I say or I’m going to kill you.” And he bound the female and the males up. You now understand who this guy is. So, now I’m feeding Larry Pool all of this information so he now has details about the guy that is killing people down in Southern California.

 At this point, I’m thinking it’s just a matter of months and this case is going to be solved. And so, I just push away from the case, saying, Larry’s got him.

Zibby:  Really?

Paul:  Yes.

Zibby:  But that was only seven years in.

Paul:  Right.

Zibby:  And you–

Paul:  [laughs] If only it had just taken seven years.

Zibby:  If only.

Paul:  I was involved in this case for 24 years.

Zibby:  24 years. How do you maintain your drive?

Paul:  It’s one of those things where the drive wasn’t always there. I would get so frustrated. And that’s what I talk about in this Audible original, is I thought I solved the case. I had a suspect, and it took me two years to find this guy and get his DNA, only to eliminate him. And then I’m just thinking, I’ve just wasted two years of my life. And you have to understand, this is not just an 8 to 5 job. I’m working it in the evenings. I’m working it on the weekends. I mean, my family life is suffering because I am now so engrossed with trying to find this guy. And then two years has gone by and I failed. So, I had this roller coaster ride of I’m there, the excitement. I’ve got this case solved. No, I don’t. And then I would push away and I can’t even think about that case.

Zibby:  But then what would bring you back?

Paul:  We could go by, and I’d be driving into work, and I’d start thinking. And I was like, “Oh, I remember this detail.” And then, I’d go and I’d open up the case file, and I’d go, “Yes, okay. I remembered that. Right?” That gives me another investigative avenue to go down. And then it would snowball. Next thing I know, I’m back in the saddle and I’m going again. And then, I’m full bore, only to be disappointed once again, once I find another prime suspect and I eliminate him again.

Dan:  You said some things over the last couple of days that were just jaw dropping moments for me. Can you get into some of the MO and tradecraft type stuff that DeAngelo would partake in? Casing houses, how he set up certain residences, and then, of course, what he did once he got inside.

Paul:  So, this particular offender, and when I initially got involved in this case, I underestimated him. And I thought we were looking, what I call the troll under the bridge, just an unsophisticated individual that is literally just going around the countryside attacking couples. He’s a sex deviant and just wanting to get in there to get food and money and move on to the next town. But once I recognized that. Hold on, there’s more to this guy. And I started taking a look at his verbal statements and started to recognize, this guy is doing what we call verbal staging. He’s coming in. I’m only here for food and money. Well, what is he doing? He’s trying to make it sound like he’s poor. He needs to do this in order to survive.

 But as you start looking at his verbal statements across the scope of the series, you start to recognize, oh, no, he’s actually staging this to make it look like something it’s not. And anytime you have staging, for example, people may be aware of crime scene staging where, let’s say, a husband shoots his wife and then tries to set it up look like a suicide. Well, the reason somebody stages a crime scene is because in their mind, they naturally would become a suspect. Well, when somebody is trying to portray themselves as something that they’re not that means that they are opposite from what they are verbally saying. So, when this guy is saying, “I’m only here for food and money, I need money, I need to get gas in order to move on to the next town.”

 If you recognize that what he’s doing is that’s a staging statement. Knowing that, that statement is going to be fed to law enforcement and cause law enforcement to go down the wrong avenue, then you got to look at something opposite. And that’s what I started to do. I started to recognize, “Oh, this guy is more sophisticated.” And then we start looking at his tactics, he would park blocks away so his car wouldn’t be anywhere near where the attack location was. He would approach the crime scene location from one pathway, and after the attack, he would go and escape along another. So, witnesses that saw him coming didn’t see him going or vice versa. There’s cases where he showed an uncanny amount of intelligence about what was going on inside that house. He seemed to know what the family was going to do. He is surveilling, and I think he used advanced surveillance techniques, in fact, and this may seem almost just like fantasy, but I believe he’s actually listening to phone calls and gathering information. So, he knew exactly when would be the optimum time to attack.

Yeardley:  How does he listen to phone calls?

Zibby:  Yeah.

Paul Holes:  In one case in particular that is notable, which is attack number 9 up in Sacramento, a 15-year-old girl is left home alone at 06:30 in the evening. This is an early hour for the Golden State Killer to be attacking. An unusual time because he typically wanted to attack in the middle of the night. Well, her parents left to go visit her brother, who was in the hospital. She’s left home alone. She was supposed to go on a date with her boyfriend that night. At 06:30 in the evening, a masked man comes into the house while she’s trying to prepare a frozen pizza in the kitchen, grabs her and immediately pulls her outside, binds her up in her backyard, goes back inside the house.

 He locks the front door, turns the TV off, and puts the window screen that he had taken off to get inside the house back on. He then goes back outside, takes the girl and takes her 200 yards down this canal, where he ultimately is in the process of starting a sexual assault and abandons it. But what he does is he sets that house back up. So, when her parents came home later on, they would just assume she was out on the date with her boyfriend. How did he know that? Well, the interesting thing about when you start looking at what this guy is potentially doing is the phones. The Golden State Killer would call the victims ahead of time. He would also call the victims to torment them after he attacked. I also think he used the phone systems in order to surveil. And how would he do that? Well, back in the 1970s, this was in the early days of these cordless phones inside houses.

Zibby:  Remember those?


Paul:  And these were just like walkie talkies. They weren’t encrypted like cordless phones are today. And when I started talking to some experts, they told me, well, back in the 1970s, all you had to do is take your standard FM radio, dial it up past 108, and you can listen to all the cordless phones inside houses in that neighborhood.

Yeardley:  What. Shut up.

Zibby:  How come I didn’t know that when I was in love with Jason Bull?


Zibby:  What?

Paul:  And so you think, well, that’s crazy. Well, in Santa Barbara, around the time frame of the first attacks, in Santa Barbara, there is an attempted break in where a little girl hears something going on at her window, and then her father comes in and calls the cops. There’s a window screen that’s been removed. And as they started looking at that location, they find an FM radio and a hatchet out by the front curb.

Zibby:  Oh, my God.

Yeardley:  That’s so bad.


Yeardley:  What was one of the aha moments for you? I mean, we played one, obviously, where the DNA connects and even though it took another, I don’t know, 40 years for the case to be solved. [Paul laughs]

Zibby:  Which is crazy because Paul’s like 22.

Yeardley:  I know. I don’t know how he did that. Do you remember, are there a few markers in the history of the 24 years that you were investigating him, where you went, this was a good day.

Paul:  In terms of good days. There were those times where as I eliminate a guy and I’m looking at the case file again, trying to reassess it with fresh eyes, the aha moments are the ones where you start seeing details that you had forgotten about. And you’re dealing with 56 cases. We had over 15,000 pages of written material. Imagine reading a novel that is 15,000 pages long. How long would that take? So, trying to have that mental energy to contain all that information, there’s just no way. So, every time I would read a case, I would discover something new. Or I was like, “Oh, I remembered that wrong.”

 And so there’s many of those mini aha moments where I’m just now in the depression of eliminating my prime suspect, going from that excitement of I’ve got this case solved to the DNA elimination of that guy, going, you know what? I’m just wasting my time. And then getting that energy level back up to start reading the cases again, going, “Oh, I forgot about this.” And so, there’s many of those types of moments. The reality is those real big aha moments like the linkage of Northern California to Southern California or the discovery of a prime suspect, those were few and far between. And that was the frustrating aspect of this case. You just had to continue to persist, hoping that eventually you would stumble across the right path to take.

Yeardley:  We have another really compelling clip from your audiobook, and I want to ask you before we play it, it talks about DeAngelo’s escalation going from raping women who are home alone to then invading houses that actually have a male partner at home as well. Do you remember that moment when you went, “Oh, shit,” this is even worse than we thought? And it’s getting worse yet.

Paul:  In terms of the actual memory of that particular moment, when you start recognizing what this guy is doing. This is an unusual offender in that once he starts attacking with a man present, two-thirds of his attacks involve men being inside that house. He is purposefully choosing to attack with men inside these houses. There isn’t another predator that I’m aware of that is doing that. So, this is showing the brazenness and the self-confidence of this particular offender. Part of the evaluation is, why is he purposely choosing to attack with this higher risk victim, somebody that could more likely hurt him? There are firearms in this house. There’s these men that had firearms in their nightstand. And this offender knew that, yet he continued to decide to go into that house and attack and take control of the situation.

 You understand this brazenness and the self-confidence of the offender when you start looking at this case from that perspective. And that’s where I started to recognize. And to this day, I believe that some of these victims he chose based on who the man was, not who the female was, even though he sexually assaulted all these women across the cases in which a sexual assault occurred. Because there are some cases in which there wasn’t. But I do believe that some of these cases, he had a prior interaction with that man. And it may have been in a business setting, it may have been bumping into the guy’s shoulder at a grocery store and was like, I got ticked off. I will show you who I am.

 And then he would come in and end up basically emasculating the male by binding the male up, putting the alarm system of the dishes on his back, and then going and raping the man’s wife or girlfriend while that man is in the house powerless.

Zibby:  Wow. So, targeting men. And do you think there was a strategic component in terms of, okay, just to use your example, “I bump up against dude in the grocery store and that pissed me off.” But do you think there was also something strategic in, “Oh, that’s somebody I could probably dominate,” you know what I mean? because, like you say, there’s such a massively added risk in going into a home when then there’s another person present, male or female, because it just makes it that much riskier. The plan can be messed up the more people there are.

Paul:  Right, going in where you have multiple victims, even if you have two females in the house, and there’s a couple of instances where he attacked with two teenage girls, I mean, that makes it an exponentially harder type of attack, and it shows that he at least has that confidence to be able to control those two victims. You throw the male into the mix, then obviously that becomes even more complicated for him. But he has that forethought. He understood. Well, I know I need to take control of this situation before this guy has a chance to come after me or be able to grab the gun.

Yeardley:  Let’s play the clip.

Jim Clemente:  On September 6, 1977, the East Area Rapist makes a change. Attack number 23 marks the first time he leaves his familiar hunting ground, spreading his terror south to the city of Stockton, 50 miles from Sacramento. At 01:00 AM, he breaks the lock on a home sliding glass patio door and creeps into the master bedroom, where he shines a flashlight into the eyes of a 27-year-old woman and her 31-year-old husband. “Don’t move or I’ll kill you,” he says, and forces the wife to tie up her husband. Then the East Area Rapist sets a cup and saucer on the husband’s back and tells him if the dishes rattle, he’ll kill the wife. He takes her into the living room, rapes her twice, and ransacks the house.

 This is when the couple’s six-year-old daughter gets up to use the bathroom. She encounters the East Area Rapist in the hallway. He’s wearing a ski mask, gloves, a belt with a long knife in it and is naked from the waist down. He tells her, “I’m playing tricks with your mom and dad. Come watch me.”

Zibby:  I mean, is there a component here where the strategy that goes into mapping out how he’ll handle all these other components now that the husband or partner is there and also a child is part of what he gets off on.

Paul:  There is part of that because he’s got power and control over this entire situation. Now, the kids were a wild card for him, and he had to interact with multiple kids during multiple attacks across the series. And what you saw as psychologically sadistic as he was with the adults, he was often handling the kids very gently. Now, you’d think, well, there’s a dichotomy there. There’s something going on. But in many ways, this was part of the MO, because once kids go hysterical on him, he’s lost control because there’s no way, unless he really harms them, to be able to get control. So, when kids would get out of bed while he’s attacking the parents, you would see him switch into that more gentile type of personality. “Oh, I’m just playing a game with your mom and dad. Do you want to watch?”

 There were a couple of kids that he ended up binding up. There was one girl that he locked in a bathroom and pulled a dresser in front of the bathroom door to prevent her from coming out. So, he did have to resort to control these kids using physical means versus just that verbal. In that particular case, after he tells that little six-year-old girl, “I’m just playing games with mom and dad, do you want to watch?” She was like, “No. She goes and uses the bathroom and then goes back to bed,” as you would expect a little six-year-old girl to do, not recognizing what was going on. But she saw him. And she was able to describe to those original investigators out of Stockton that she saw a man wearing a mask. He had a t-shirt on. He was nude from the waist down, and what she described as a sword tucked in a holster on his waist. So, she was able to see DeAngelo and his costume, so to speak, what he was doing to affect the attack.

Dan:  Studying the circumstances of these crimes early on with Snelling and Maggiore and the Offerman, Manning murders, it really appears to me that those murders were about self-preservation for him. And as he moves his way down to Southern California, it seems like his motivation really changed. Can you talk about that?

Paul:  Right. So, as the Visalia Ransacker, there’s a case in which he goes into the house and tries to pull 16-year-old Beth Snelling out of the house, try to abduct her out of the house. And as she’s fighting him, her father, Claude Snelling, hears the commotion and tries to come to her rescue. At this point, the Golden State Killer ends up shooting Claude Snelling killing him, kicks Beth Snelling three times in the head and then runs off. This is his first homicide that we know of, but it was a self-preservation homicide. This man, this father, is coming to rescue his daughter, so now he has to resort to killing him. This is not a fantasy motivated type of homicide.

Zibby:  It’s not planned.

Paul:  No, it’s not planned at all. He was hoping to go in, grab the 16-year-old girl, pull her out silently, and then do whatever he was going to do. But the father ends up interfering with that process. In February of 1978, up in Rancho Cordova, you have Brian and Katie Maggiore out, just walking their dog like they normally would do. It’d be about 11 o’clock at night. It appears that they ran across an individual that was known as East Area Rapist at the time. And Brian Maggiore was a military police officer and was known to have an aggressive personality. The thought is that Brian Maggiore confronts this guy who’s masked up, prowling in this neighborhood. And now a chase ensues, and Brian pursues the East Area Rapist through a couple of backyards.

 And then at this point, the East Area Rapist possibly realizes that he’s not going to get away, turns around, pulls a gun, shoots and kills Brian Maggiore, and then chases down Katie, who’s now run around the side of a house and is at a gate, trying desperately to get out of that backyard, but can’t figure out how to open that gate. And this guy comes up, shoots her a single time in the head, kills her, and then he jumps that location and runs off. Again, this was a self-preservation. It was a double homicide. He had two witnesses that saw him out prowling. It is not a fantasy motivated crime. It’s all about self-preservation.

 When you get down to Southern California and you start talking about the double homicide, the first homicide that was attributed to the person known as The Original Night Stalker back in the day, Dr. Offerman and Dr. Manning. This was a classic East Area Rapist style attack, where he gets those two victims bound face down in their bed. And it appears that he probably left that room to do what he normally would do, which is to go and take a look at what he could steal as well as eat from their kitchen. During that time, it appears that Dr. Offerman was able to slip his bindings. And so, when the offender comes back into the room, Dr. Offerman immediately gets up and tries to charge him from around the bed. Well, anytime there was a man present when the offender attacked, he always had a gun.

 Well, as soon as Dr. Offerman stands up, the Golden State Killer shoots, initially striking Dr. Offerman in the neck, and then shoots him multiple times as Dr. Offerman tried to make his way around the bed until Offerman goes down and ultimately dies. Once Offerman is incapacitated, he goes over, shoots Dr. Manning a single time in the head, and he runs off. This is an attack that went sideways on him. Again, this is not how he wanted it to go, but it was a double homicide, but it was for self-preservation.

Yeardley:  Two questions. One, were you ever able to trace those bullets to a gun registered to anyone?

Paul:  No.

Yeardley:  Interesting. And two, he stopped the spree, at least as far as you know, stopped for a good 20 years before DeAngelo was arrested. Are there any theories about why that happened?

Paul:  Yes.

Yeardley:  Oh, hurray.

Paul:  [laughs] So, when you take a look at this series, this was an offender that was continuously attacking, whether he’s committing the fetish burgs as the Visalia Ransacker, or he’s the East Area Rapist attacking through Northern California, or now he’s going down and he’s more in this biannual phase. Once he starts committing homicide, he’s doing generally two attacks a year. In July of 1981, he attacks his last attack in Santa Barbara, which was the double homicide of Gregory Sanchez and Cheri Domingo. And in that particular attack, when he enters into the house, Gregory Sanchez had obviously heard something had gotten up out of bed and was holding a flashlight, and probably is face to face confronting this guy coming into the house. Gregory Sanchez is shot initially, takes a bullet through the left cheek, that bullet exits out behind the left ear. Nonfatal wound, but absolutely a stunning injury. Gregory Sanchez ends up going down on the ground and is probably unconscious for a period of time. And it appears that the offender goes and starts dealing with Cheri Domingo on the bed to the point to where she’s found. And we have a sexual component that has occurred because we have his DNA found in this case. However, Gregory Sanchez isn’t dead. It appears, based on the blood patterns in this crime scene, that he ends up what I call reanimating. He becomes conscious, he realizes that he needs to fight, and now he ends up getting into a fight with the Golden State Killer. And he is in hand-to-hand combat. The Golden State Killer is hand to hand combat with 6 foot 3 Gregory Sanchez.

 And he has to go back multiple times to deal with this much larger male. I believe at this point, once the offender has killed both Gregory Sanchez and Cheri Domingo, that this offender is now realizing and he very likely was hurt. And I think he left this crime scene scared, recognizing that he could have been caught or killed because of this interaction with the male. Now that we know that DeAngelo is the Golden State Killer and recognized that he was actually older than what most people thought. At this point in time, this is a 35-year-old man. So, he’s got to be thinking, I don’t want to be caught. And I’m recognizing I’m in my mid 30s. I’m now starting to see a diminishing in my physical skill set.

Zibby:  Hold on, just kidding.


Zibby:  Because of the mid 30s thing.

Paul:  Hey. As a 50-year-old guy, I absolutely understand that physical diminish.


Zibby:  But it feels so he was on a roll, and there was this progression. He was escalating. He started from breaking into people’s homes and taking things to raping women who were home alone to then raping women who were there with other people and then murdering. And it seems like he couldn’t help himself. And so, to be able to stop cold like that.

Paul:  Well, when you say stop, there’s the physical act of actually committing the crimes, and then there’s a fantasy component. There’s no question that this guy continued to fantasize about committing these crimes. But you have to remember, this guy did everything he possibly could do to prevent himself from being caught. He’s all about self-preservation. And when he’s recognizing that now, he’s at a point to where maybe he could get caught, he is going to pull back. We don’t have a case for five years after he had that interaction with Gregory Sanchez. But then in May 5, 1986, he pops up in Irvine again and kills 19-year-old Janelle Cruz. But I think it’s notable when you look at this offender that two-thirds of his attacks, after he started attacking with a man present, has a man present. In this last attack, there is no male present. She had her boyfriend over earlier in the evening. In all likelihood, the Golden State Killer was watching Janelle Cruz and her boyfriend inside the house, and he chose to wait before his attack till this boyfriend left. He doesn’t want to deal with a man again because of his experience with Gregory Sanchez five years before.

Yeardley:  Did he have a physical type of woman?

Paul:  So, early in the series, what was seen by the original investigators is he seemed to really be drawn towards physically attractive females. But as the series progressed through Northern California, what you do see is cases where he attacks and the women aren’t as physically attractive. Those are cases I actually looked at going, well, hold on. Maybe those are the cases where he is attacking because who the man is, and he’s getting back at the male now by going after the wife, even though she didn’t fit this type of look that you saw earlier in the series.

Zibby:  You know how in the movies and TV, the investigator who’s been trying to track the serial killer almost develops this relationship with them. They can’t stop thinking about them, they’re trying to imagine what it’s like to be them, and it’s almost like they’re channeling them. Did you feel like over the course of these 24 years, you felt like you had this one-sided weird relationship? I mean, he must have been on your mind so much.

Paul:  I don’t know what I want to admit to on that. [Zibby laughs]

Zibby:  But, I mean, he must have occupied so much of your headspace.

Paul:  Right.

Zibby:  And when you found out who he was, was he anything like what you had been imagining for all of these years?

Paul:  So, part of taking a look at these cases, the technique that you’re looking at is these case files are written from the victim’s perspective because they’re the ones that are relaying the information. I saw this masked man come in, and this is what he said, and this is what he did. But what you need to do is you also have to put yourself inside that mask, and you have to look at it as he’s coming in through the sliding door and he’s seeing the victims in the bed and he’s making those statements. “Why is he choosing that particular entry point? Why is he choosing to make those particular statements?” So, you are trying to put yourself in the shoes of the offender to better understand him. And I did that over and over and over again over the course of those 24 years.

 So, when you say, did I establish a relationship with this unknown person? I absolutely did. I thought if I saw this guy in a crowd, I’d be able to say, there he is. That’s how well I thought I knew who this guy was. But once we identified DeAngelo, I was like, “Oh, I did not know who he was.”


Zibby:  Really?

Paul:  Really?

Zibby:  Did he feel familiar to you?

Paul:  There are components about DeAngelo that absolutely was like, okay, this is what I was imagining, but there are other aspects where it’s like, oh, know, this is a very different individual than what I thought was going on.

Zibby:  Like what?

Paul:  There’s aspects that I can’t necessarily talk about. However, in terms of judging this personality, when you read these case files, particularly once he becomes the East Area Rapist, this is a dominant personality. He came in and dominated this couple. He dominated this family. I saw an individual that was very strong. I thought this would be somebody who would portray themselves as being very strong in their normal life.

Yeardley:  Physically strong?

Paul:  Personality wise.

Zibby:  Like alpha-

Paul:  Alpha male type of personality, absolutely. And then, once we got DeAngelo in handcuffs, and he’s at Sac Homicide in the interview room, and he’s sitting there, and I can’t get into too much detail myself and this other investigator, Paige Kneeland with Sac Sheriff’s Office, we’re going, “Oh, this guy’s just kind of a wuss.” This is almost disappointing relative to what we thought this guy would turn out to be.

Yeardley:  Backstage, you talked about two different kinds of offenders. You have the ones who and you had a name for them. Ones, who wants to cuddle you and ones who are angry all the time.

Paul:  Right. So, part of what I do is, when I’m reading these case files of unsolved cases, I’m trying to do my own version of profiling. And it’s not on the level of what you see the FBI profilers do, but it’s on a level of where I’m grossly categorizing these guys. And there’s this rapist typology model that was put out there many years ago. And then Dr. Keppel, who was involved with the Green River killing and the Ted Bundy cases out of Seattle, had basically taken these rapist typologies and put them on serial killers. And he’s got a book out there, Signature Killers. It’s a long read. It’s a hard read. It’s like a textbook, but I really glommed onto that.

 It really helped me when I’m working many different types of cases, not just the Golden State Killer, to help assess these offenders and try to link cases together. And you do see these broad categories where somebody like the Golden State Killer is what I am referring to as more of your power assertive/anger retaliatory type of offender. This is a guy that wants power and control, he’s dominant, he is not nice to the victims, and he is angry. There is something that makes him mad in his personal life. Instead of taking that anger on whatever is making him mad, he goes and takes it on the proxy, the victim. This contrasts with another offender that was a case that I was involved with for a long time, since 1996, that was recently solved again using the genealogy, this NorCal Rapist.

 And the NorCal Rapist was the offender that once he got control of the victim, he would sexually assault them, he would want to cuddle, he would stroke their hair, he would whisper sweet nothings into their ear like it was a consensual relationship.

Yeardley:  I feel like maybe you expect the angry guy who wants to dominate you and is expressive about his anger. I do not want somebody to try to cuddle me after they have violated me ever.

Paul:  I understand that.


Dan:  You see all these composite sketches of the Golden State Killer. Did any of them remotely match up to Mr. DeAngelo?

Paul:  We had many composites that were done across the series back in the 1970s, these hand drawn composites that these witnesses have fed to the original investigators. One of the things that you have to recognize is, at least during the East Area Rapist phase of the series, that none of those composites were from any of the victims because the offender always had a mask on. None of the victims ever saw this guy’s face, which was part of the problem in this investigation. So, these composites were from neighbors who happened to look outside and see what they thought was a strange man walking by or something similar to that. So, I had no confidence whatsoever in any of these hand drawn composites during the East Area Rapist phase of the attack. Turns out Visalia Ransacker, which predated the East Area Rapist.

 So, you’ve got the Visalia Ransacker attack in 1974, 1975. When I say attacks, he’s doing fetish burgs and you had the Claude Snelling homicide. This offender was seen by many people in the areas where he’s doing these burglaries. And the composite of the Visalia Ransacker turns out to be spot on to looking like DeAngelo from 1974. So, it was absolutely accurate. Now, I’m a person. I’m one of the investigators, when I was evaluating the cases, I was going, “I don’t think the Visalia Ransacker is the same guy.” And that’s one of the areas of this series where it turns out I was wrong.

Dave:  I want to venture into some of the other bigger cases that you’ve worked, not GSK, but some other ones that we’ve heard about over the last few days and kind of your role and your approach to those types of cases as well.

Paul:  Obviously, the Golden State Killer case was the very first cold case I got involved with back in 1994 and is the biggest case that I was involved with. There isn’t going to be a case bigger than that, but I was involved in many, many cases over the course of my career during the time frame that I was working the Golden State Killer case.

Yeardley:  Were they all cold cases?

Paul:  No. So, I was involved in active cases as well as cold cases, and so I was trying to juggle. Oftentimes, I would be pulling out cold cases, and I typically focused on cases from the late 60s to 1970s in the Bay Area and trying to see if I could solve those. But of course, we were catching other major cases at the same time and notable cases. Contra Costa County, if you don’t know, is on the other side of the San Francisco Bay from San Francisco, it’s the other coast, Contra Costa. So, we’re a small county geographically, but we have over a million population base. We have Oakland right outside of our county. And Oakland crime feeds up into the west end.

 We have high crime rates in the Pittsburg Antioch area, and we would just have strange stuff happening, and I seem to catch all the strange stuff. Notable high-profile cases that I had some involvement with, some cases more than others included Laci Peterson, Jaycee Dugard, and these were huge cases within the area. With Laci Peterson, she happened to wash up in Contra Costa County jurisdiction. Her and her baby Conner washed up. And so, I was dealing with those bodies when they came up, and it was a peripheral involvement. But then Jaycee Dugard, who was abducted out of Tahoe by Phil and Nancy Garrido and had been living in my jurisdiction for 19 years, we had no idea we had this little missing girl that was in our jurisdiction.

 I ended up spending two weeks working with both Contra Costa and Alameda County agencies, trying to search Phil Garrido two acres of land to see if there were other victims there. And I saw the conditions that Jaycee and her daughters that were fathered by her abductor, Phil Garrido, the conditions that they were raised in. And it was abhorrent. But those are the types of cases that would happen to just be there in Contra Costa County. And they’re stressful when you’re dealing with them. But for me, when I look back at my career, I was fortunate to have been exposed and to have to work those types of cases because you learn from them.

Zibby:  Yeah, I mean, we’re joking about it the other day because you were describing the day before you were going to retire. And I said, man, I’m not huge into astrology, but I’d be so interested in your astrological chart because of all the strange shit that really does seem to fall on your lap and the timing of it is so wild. I mean, maybe you guys know the story, but I love the little detail about this day. If you wouldn’t mind sharing a bit about it?

Paul:  Sure. So, we’re doing the genealogy aspect on the Golden State Killer’s DNA, and we had developed a handful of males that were about the right age with California connections that we’re digging into. And there was one guy that was out of state that really looked good on paper as possibly being our guy. And so, I was really pursuing him and I was tracking down his uncle’s ex-wives and finding out all sorts of interesting information. But ultimately, we eliminated him. And that’s when DeAngelo was sort of the last guy standing in terms of this small group of males.

 At this point, I wasn’t real hot on DeAngelo as being a suspect. He was a full time Auburn police officer living up in Auburn. How is he going out and attacking not only in Sacramento, but in Stockton and Modesto and out in the East Bay as far south of San Jose while being fully employed up in Auburn and living up in Auburn, it didn’t make sense for me. It was not fitting with the geographic profile that I thought for the Golden State Killer. But at a certain point, I decided I need to dig into this guy. So, I typically, when I start getting what I call a prime suspect, I try to identify, do they have an ex-wife or an ex-girlfriend? Because a woman scorned is my best friend, [Zibby laughs] because they are willing to tell anything about the guy.

Zibby:  Dan and Dave, you concur?

Dave:  It’s definitely a tactic we use, for sure.

Paul:  So, there is a Bonnie. And one of the aspects of this story is the guy when he was known as the East Area Rapist in Davis, California, for the third attack, in that case, in this series in that town in Davis, as he’s literally raping this woman, he is sobbing and he’s saying, “I hate you, Bonnie. I hate you, Bonnie,” over and over again. And so, we’ve always thought, well, there is a significant Bonnie, a female named Bonnie in his life. We didn’t know if it was his mom, a wife, ex-wife, girlfriend. But it was like, “This guy’s probably got a Bonnie that he doesn’t care for” at that point in time. Right?


Paul:  So when DeAngelo came onto the target list, one of the crime analysts that was helping out on this small team that was doing the genealogy had found a newspaper article showing that Joe DeAngelo had been engaged to a Bonnie back in 1970. And then I started digging into that and I was like, oh, I can’t find any evidence that they were ever married. In fact, this DeAngelo guy ended up marrying this other woman three years later in 1973. So, it looked like the relationship with Bonnie had gone sideways before any marriage occurred. So that was one of those check marks where you go, “Okay, that fits with what we know about the offender.” But I’ve had other suspects, believe it or not, who had Bonnies in their lives. I had one Bonnie said, “Yeah, I got married in 1959 to this guy. And when I wanted to annul the relationship, he pulled a gun on me.”

 And I’m going, this has got to be the guy. Turns out not. It was just another relationship that went sideways on a guy that turned out not to be the Golden State Killer. But what ultimately caused me to really focus in on Joe DeAngelo was when I talked to the former Auburn police chief, Nick Willick, the guy that fired DeAngelo after DeAngelo had been caught in 1979 for shoplifting dog repellent and a hammer. And you’re going, “Why is an officer shoplifting first, but then shoplifting those particular items?”

 When I ended up talking to Nick and he had no idea what case I was talking to him about, I was just saying, “Hey, I’m working this old case, and this Joseph DeAngelo, who used to work for Auburn PD, has come up in the investigation.” And Nick was like, “Oh, I remember Joe. I used to be his sergeant, so I know him pretty well. I remember him pretty well.” And he told me some stuff about Joe and how he was a poor cop and there were some tactical issues with him. And then he started talking about the internal affairs investigation after the arrest for the dog repellent and hammer shoplift, and after that internal affairs investigation had ended and the termination process had ended and Joseph DeAngelo was fired.

 The administrative officer that was involved in that case had gone back to this Auburn police chief and said, “Hey, during that process, DeAngelo had threatened to kill you. “Well, you go, well, that’s interesting,” [because that’s how I would expect the Golden State Killer to respond if somebody was going to terminate him. However, it’s an employer employee contentious relationship that happens fairly frequently. I’ve been in those situations and you do get those types of statements. So, it wasn’t anything overtly incriminating, but it was just one of those, okay, there’s a personality there that is kind of consistent with the guy.

 But the thing that really pushed me over is when Nick Willick, the former Auburn police chief, said, “Yeah, Paul, during that time frame, while Joe DeAngelo was on administrative leave, I was asleep in my bedroom, and my daughter came in the middle of the night and said, Daddy, there is a man standing outside my bedroom window shining a flashlight.” Nick gets up, he runs outside. He had a brand-new house with no landscaping in the backyard. He said there were shoe impressions all around the perimeter of his backyard. But the guy was gone. And he goes, “Paul, I’m absolutely convinced that was Joe DeAngelo who had come and was looking into his daughter’s bedroom window.”

Zibby:  Oh, my God.

Yeardley:  If the chief of police is certain that that’s who that was, how come there’s no follow up?

Zibby:  Yeah.

Yeardley:  What up, Paul?

Zibby:  Yeah, what up, Paul?


Paul:  It’s a good question, but again, this is more of a civil process that was going on. And ultimately the chief got what he needed with Joe DeAngelo. So, the criminality of a criminal trespass really is not that big of a deal. He wasn’t thinking anything about this guy possibly being a serial rapist at the time and that’s what he was. This is during the East Area Rapist phase. In fact, it was at the very end of the East Area Rapist phase. But in retrospect, when he’s telling me this and I’m going, that’s the East Area Rapist, aka the Golden State Killer, that’s when I drive up to see. I need to see where this Joe DeAngelo is living.

Zibby:  Yeah, you did.

Paul:  I did. So, I ended up just due to the circumstances of my career, I was retiring at the end of March of this year, and there are certain things that we were stacking up. I was going to retire on, and I did retire technically with the county on March 30th. But because of this case, and it was an unsolved case, I had to be flown to New York to go on the Meg Kelly Show with Jane Carson and Debbi Domingo to talk about this case. So, I took a couple of days off at the end of my career to be able to go do that to support these victims. So, my last day was going to be on a Tuesday. Well, Monday is when I drove up to see where is this Joe DeAngelo living?

 And so, I drive up from the Bay Area to Citrus Heights, Sacramento, California, and I park outside of Joe DeAngelo’s house.

Zibby:  By yourself?

Paul:  By myself. Which for the most part, I did my entire career investigating this case by myself. I didn’t have a partner.

Zibby:  Scary.

Paul:  So I’m sitting there, and at this point, you got to understand, I’m not convinced this is the guy. I’ve been here so many times, I’m just thinking, well, he’s interesting, but what’s the likelihood this is going to turn out to be the guy? And I really wanted to solve this case before I retired. And I recognized I wasn’t going to do that. So, I thought, well, at minimum, what I could do is at least close this guy out. And the only way to do that would be get a DNA sample. So, I’m sitting there thinking, “You know what? I should just go knock on the door, introduce myself and do what I have done countless number of times. Hey, I’m Paul Holes. I’m investigating this old case, and you know what? Let’s chat. Your name has come up in the investigation, establish a rapport, and, oh, by the way, do you mind giving me a DNA sample” and believe it, that works. [laughter] But then as I sat there, I don’t know enough about him yet, and there’s just enough, particularly what the Auburn police chief had said. It was like, “It’s possible it could be the guy.” And that’s when I decided, I just need to drive off. And so that was my last act as an active duty law enforcement officer. The next day, I turned my badge and gun in.

Zibby:  And then how soon after that were they like, yeah.

Paul:  It was three weeks later. So, I end up retiring because we knew we were close. We ended up continuing to work the case. And even though I was retired, this small group of men and women that were part of the GSK team, and then we also had Barbara Rae-Venter as the genealogist helping us. We continued to work what we were doing, but I was just doing it from home versus driving into the office. So, in many ways, there was no change for me. I was just doing what I was doing. And then three weeks later, we recognized, we need to get this guy’s DNA sample, a direct DNA sample to see is he the guy or not. So, I ended up briefing Sac Sheriff’s Office. My FBI partner, Steve Kramer, briefed his FBI counterpart up at FBI Sacramento.

 And then FBI Sac and Sac Sheriff formed a collaborative surveillance team to follow DeAngelo around. So, during that time frame, I’m retired, right? So now I’m relocating my family from California to Colorado. So, now I’m in Colorado buying a house, but I’m getting updates as to what the surveillance team is seeing. And then at a certain point, I’m sitting in a restaurant, had just made an offer on the house. Turns out to be the house that I’m living in now. And I’m at a restaurant, P.F. Chang’s Restaurant.


Zibby:  Little PF Chang’s. Shout out.

Paul:  Yes. Little P.F. Chang’s and had finished eating. And I get a call from Kirk Campbell, who’s Lieutenant at Sac DA’s office. He’s one of the five that was part of this team. And I’m just thinking it’s another update. So, I excuse myself. I go outside and Kirk immediately, as soon as I answer the phone, he’s like, “Paul, you can’t tell anybody.” So, they had gotten their first surreptitious DNA sample. A surreptitious DNA sample is one that we follow somebody and when they leave a DNA sample of themselves in the public domain, we go and we grab it.

 Well, Joseph DeAngelo had gone to a local hobby lobby. He had a hobby of building these airplanes, remote control airplanes. So, he’s going to the hobby lobby, and when he’s in there, an undercover officer went up and swabbed his car door handle. That sample ended up coming back and matching the Golden State Killer. 20 out of 21 markers. The 21st marker, they just didn’t get a result. And so, Kirk is saying, yeah, the lab seems to be really excited. And Kirk’s not a DNA guy. I’m a DNA guy. And I’m going, that’s him. So, at that point, that was the big aha moment where I’m going, we got him. This is him.

Zibby:  24-year investigation, your very last day is when you are sitting in front of the guy’s house. Like, that’s poetry. And also, what were the planets doing, like between that and P.F. Chang’s? Like the planets, I want to know, because what a time for you after all that work.

Paul:  Right. When I initially told that story, I wanted to solve the case before I retired. I didn’t get that done. But I can say before I retired, I was within 50ft of the guy I was been looking for 24 years. It’s interesting on how the media spins that as they equate that to Jodie Foster in Buffalo Bill’s house at the end of Silence of The Lambs. Right? And it wasn’t like that at all. I’m just sitting there going, should I talk to this guy or not? And then I drive off. Now, in hindsight, knowing who he is, okay, he’s the Golden State Killer. We know he shot at a cop in Visalia. We know he’s killed many people. Joseph DeAngelo is a former law enforcement officer with law enforcement training. He had more guns registered to his name than what the California DOJ system could put out in their printout. And those guns were likely in his house. If I had walked up to that door and he recognized me. I recognize now that the best decision I ever made was driving away.

Yeardley:  Bravo.

[cheers and applause]

Yeardley:  My question was, after you get that call and you’re at P.F. Chang’s and you go outside, what do you say when you go back to the table?


Paul:  So, I go back in, and it’s just me and my wife. And we had finished eating. The guy had just delivered the Fortune cookies right before I had left. So, we had just made an offer on a house. And so, I go back in and my wife is super excited about her fortune because it said, “You will find the perfect house.” And we had just made this offer. So, she’s, blowing up, all excited about this fortune, and she’s like, you got to open up your fortune cookie and see what your fortune says. So, I go through the motions. She’s reading my face. She says, I was ashen, like she could tell there was something up. And she’s a former DNA analyst, so she knows what’s up, and she’s going, “So what did Kirk want? Did the DNA results come back?”

 And all I did was like that. And I did not need her blowing up inside this restaurant. I needed to keep this quiet, right? [Zibby laughs] And so, she’s like, “DNA already? They rushed it that fast? What were the results?” And I didn’t say anything. And she says “No.”


Paul:  And then she says no again. And all I did was a simple nod. And then she’s, like, blowing up, and she’s pushing me out of the restaurant to get out to our rental car so she can hear the details. And then so I’m telling her in the rental car. And then that’s when my partner from the FBI, Steve Kramer, calls, and I have him on speakerphone. And we’re now talking shop, right? Because we’re action. We’re like, “Okay, what’s the next step?” And she’s like, “What are you guys doing? Aren’t you guys should be high fiving over the phone and everything else.” There is lot of work.

 When you find this guy, there is a ton of work that needs to be done. And I’m now trying to figure out, do I need to get back to Sacramento tonight versus my scheduled flight, which was two days from now. Ultimately, because they needed a second DNA sample, they said, “Paul, just come back your normal time.” And so, I came back two days later, I end up driving up to Sacramento. I embed myself within Sac Sheriff homicide and myself and another just brilliant investigator on this case, Ken Clark. We co-author the arrest warrant for DeAngelo, and then we wait for the second sample and the lab results. And then the lab results come back. It’s a 100% match to the Golden State Killer. Ken goes and gets a judge to sign the arrest warrant, and then that’s when the green light was made to go and get him and take him into custody.

Zibby:  Wow.


Zibby:  So, we’re going to open it up to you guys for questions. I just first want to let you mention you’re working on a show.

Paul:  I’ve entered into a relationship with the Oxygen Network, and so we have a couple of projects going on, and so I’m excited about these shows.

Zibby:  We’re too.

Paul:  I can’t get into details, but hopefully they turn out to be compelling and we’ll see how it goes.

Zibby:  Cool. Okay, so there’s already a lineup.

Yeardley:  So, we’ll start with the right

Female Speaker:  Awesome, thank you. Hi, you guys are amazing. My question is, earlier you were talking about how you would get on the case and then get off the case, and then it would start snowballing again, and you would do all that. Now that you’re famous, how does your family– is it the same thing where you were still really intricate and really doing it, and now you’re also still really doing it, going on all these tours and doing that? or is it totally different from what it used to be like.

Paul:  No, it’s very different. So, working this case, and once it’s solved, there’s definitely a void. And what I’ve done since then does not fill that void. And that’s where I’m hoping with these shows that I’m doing, which will be more active investigations, where we maybe have some unsolved cases where I help agencies that I’ll be able to get into doing what I was doing before, even though it’s on the media side. But at least I’ll do something where it will be similar to what I was doing with the Golden State Killer and some of these other cases I’ve worked.

Female Speaker:  Hi, Paul. I just have to know if you know what did your Fortune cookie say [crosstalk] actually?


Zibby:  So good?

Paul:  It’s funny, but I remember opening the fortune up, and it was some generic fortune because my wife, of course, had to know what it said, but I have no memory of what it said. I literally looked at it, and I was like, yeah, I don’t care about that right now.


Yeardley:  [laughs] You need to come up with a better answer than that.

Paul:  I wish there was.

Yeardley:  Next panel, you do you’d be like, so the fortune said.

Paul:  That’s the Golden State Killer right.

Yeardley:  Yes, there it is.

Paul:  Right?

Zibby:  All the fortune cookie companies right now are going to be making that little [crosstalk]. [Paul laughs]

Female Speaker:  Hi, big fan. Stay sexy, Paul.


Female Speaker:  My biggest question is, do you think DeAngelo will ever talk or give any?

Paul:  Okay, so, now that is a kind of a complex question. So, DeAngelo was interviewed. All I can say is that he was not cooperative like we wanted. There’s a question as to whether or not he made statements during that interview, and I can’t, from a legal perspective, really get into that because it could have some ramifications down the road. We wanted him to tell us more than what he did is really what I can say.

Female Speaker:  Now that you’re retired, it sounds like you’re really busy. Is there anything from the job though that you’re really missing? But a friend of mine from the Murderinos from Delaware want to know, what is it that’s the worst part of the job that you did, being a detective?

Paul:  Oh wow. Now, in terms of what I miss, and this is what’s been great, meeting with the Small Town Dicks Podcast is, of course, Zibby and Yeardley are awesome. Dan and Dave are brethren. So, being able, because I’ve been so engrossed from the media side, being able to interact with people that I lived with for three decades, that is just so nice. It’s grounding again. It’s like I’m back with my people. As far as the worst thing as a detective, my career is somewhat unusual, is that I worked as a forensic scientist. I worked as a crime scene investigator. I worked as an investigator. So, I span multiple careers. But at least for me, is there’s those cases when you go out and you are looking at something horrific that’s been done to a purely innocent victim.

 Anybody could have been in that victim’s shoes, whether it be an adult victim or a child victim. And you have to look at that and you have to go to their autopsy and see what happens there and then have to deal with that over and over again. That I would say, takes its toll.

Female Speaker:  Hi, everybody. I work as a forensic scientist, and it was very exciting to be in a forensic science lab when all of this was going down in April. However, I am not a DNA analyst. I am actually a latent print examiner.

Paul:  Oh, wow.

Female Speaker:  Yeah. [laughs] So, latent prints, for those who don’t know, is just a simpler way to refer to fingerprint, palm print, and barefoot print evidence. Was there any latent print evidence that was preserved in any of these crime scenes? And have you been able to perform any comparisons if so?

Paul:  Yes. In fact, as you know, there’s really two forms of evidence that can identify your offender, and that’s DNA and latents. And a lot of people in this day and age overlook the fact that latents can do that. And latents are a huge, in fact, probably solve more cases than what DNA solve.

Female Speaker:  Yes.


Paul:  We had. I know how latent examiners think. We did have latent prints that had been preserved over the years. And so, one of the strategies that we had employed, in addition to doing a reanalysis of everything using the latest technologies, with IAFIS, with palms, and everything else that’s going on, at least within California, you have latent databases at a regional level that sometimes you can get a hit at a regional level versus at the state level or at the national level. So, we did visit that.

 We also looked at the national level to try to maximize that. In fact, Orange County, from a latent out of my jurisdiction, Danville, California, had actually identified a burglar from a lamp that the East Area Rapist had touched. And this guy had died, and he was buried out in the Massachusetts area. Larry Pool actually had this guy exhumed and got his DNA and showed it wasn’t the East Area Rapist. It just so happened that he was a burglar that had been in the house prior to that attack and had touched the same lamp that the East Area Rapist had. But we had revisited and had multiple latent examiners look at these latents over the years. Now, at this point, has there been a direct comparison to DeAngelo? I don’t know, because I’ve separated from the active investigation.

Female Speaker:  Okay, thank you.

Paul:  Thank you.

Female Speaker:  Hi. Do you believe that he was at the community meeting?


Zibby:  Oh, yeah. Was he? [applause]

Paul:  Okay, so now that has turned into somewhat of an interesting thing. Literally, it’s changed over the last 12 months. Do I believe that somebody like DeAngelo would have attended these townhall meetings? Absolutely. However, the one instance that we’re talking about that’s out there in the online forums is this instance where at a townhall meeting, an Italian male stands up and makes some sort of statements, whether he’s talking about other men, letting their wives become victims and how he wouldn’t do that, or he’s making derogatory marks about the East Area Rapist, him and his wife later become victims. So, the thought was is that the East Area Rapist, Golden State Killer was in that audience, saw this guy make bad statements that he didn’t like, and said, “I will show you who I am and came and attacked that couple.”

 Within the last 12 months, the original investigator that had relayed that story, her memory has kind of– she is waffled a little bit. And so, it’s gone from that type of scenario to, well, maybe it was more, he was in a smaller group after the meeting and had been overheard. So, at this point, I don’t know if it’s accurate or not. And so, I don’t know if that just got blown up more than what it is or if it was the reality. But I do think somebody like DeAngelo would absolutely be attending town hall meetings to get intel about what law enforcement was saying about him and also possibly to take that opportunity to maybe select his next victim.

Female Speaker:  Well, and you were also saying earlier at dinner that you believe that he paid really close attention throughout the years up until when he was caught to what the investigation was doing. I was like, “Do you think he watched the documentaries?” You’re like, 100% he did. I find that really interesting.

Paul:  Right. When I went to DeAngelo’s house after he was arrested, I purposely looked for evidence of him following the case. I was looking to see, “Did he have Michelle McNamara’s book in his bookshelf.”

Yeardley:  Did he?

Paul:  I didn’t see it, no.

Yeardley:  Okay.

Paul:  But what he did have–

Female Speaker:  She’s bummed.

Paul:  [laughs] What he did have is he had a computer in his bedroom. And one of the interesting aspects about his computer setup is that he had a towel draped over the monitor. And as the East Area Rapist, what he would do is after he separated the female from her male partner, he would take her out to the family room, lay her down in the family room, and then turn the TV on and drape a towel over the TV in order to get that soft glow. So, in essence, in his own bedroom, he’s doing the same thing. So, I think he’s basically reliving his crimes in his bedroom, possibly fondling the souvenirs, and doing what he possibly is likely doing sexually, reliving those moments.

 Now, what I will say is that with that computer in the room, there’s no question he’s going online. On his bathroom mirror, he had taped notes to himself and his oldest daughter, and one of those notes had said, “Internet is down. Get it fixed now.” And it was exclamation point, exclamation point, exclamation point. I believe he’s now panicking because he can’t follow the case, because the Internet is down, and he’s telling his daughter, get this thing fixed. I do believe he is following the case, and I do believe, in fact, I know he knows who I am.

Yeardley:  How do you know that?

Paul:  I can’t divulge too much, but just say during the interview process, when my name was brought up to him, he showed recognition.

Zibby:  Oh, my God.

Yeardley:  And do you know that he was collecting trophies from his victims? And did you find any of those in the house or you can’t tell me that out– [crosstalk]

Zibby:  Sorry, guys, we are getting to your questions. it is burning. We’re burning.

Paul:  Well, there’s no question that he’s collecting trophies or souvenirs. He did that through the course of the series. Now, whether or not those have been found, I can’t comment on that.

Female Speaker:  If you’re allowed to talk about it, did you have any interaction with his family? If you’re not allowed to talk about it, what’s it like interacting with family members of offenders?


Female Speaker:  I’m so curious to know what his household was like the years after.

Paul:  So, I did not directly interact with his daughters that were at the station where we were at. I will tell you that what I saw and what I know is that I consider his daughters his last victims. They had no idea about who he was and were devastated to find out. And they are dealing with those ramifications to this day. And it was very sad to see. These are very bright young women, very successful young women, and their lives are completely changed as a result of what their dad did back in the 1970s and the 1980s.

Female Speaker:  Do we know anything about DeAngelo’s childhood? Like, did he have awful parents? Did he get hit on the head? Was he a bedwetter? All those terrible things.


Paul:  So, I will say, at least when I separated from the active investigation, we knew very little. There’s some things that have come to light. There’s the very public story out there that the media actually found where, reportedly, DeAngelo’s younger sister was raped by two airmen over in Germany, and he was there present and had to watch that.

Female Speaker:  Yikes.

Paul:  I can’t say that that’s been verified, but obviously, that would be a traumatic experience for a normal 10-year-old boy whether or not he would be considered a normal 10-year-old boy, we don’t know at this point in time. His father was a military person who ended up separating from that family and established a second family over in Korea. And one of the oddities is that all the kids his father had with this new wife over in Korea, he named them the same names as his kids out here in California.

Zibby:  Great.

Female Speaker:  So, definitely terrible parents. Nailed it. Thank you.


Paul:  All I can say is there’s something going on there, but I just don’t know enough yet.

Female Speaker:  Do you think DeAngelo has committed more murders than have been attributed to him?

Paul:  So, I think it’s very possible that he has committed a few more murders that we haven’t identified to him. But I don’t think you’re going to see all of a sudden 15 more murders popping up. We really tried to find other cases related before we knew of him. We tried to find other cases that fit the MO, that had the DNA evidence, and we didn’t. I believe that in all likelihood that after the Janelle Cruz case in 1986, that that was either his last or one of his last attacks. Now, it’s possible there’s a few in there that will come to light, and there are some cases that are actively being looked at right now. But again, you’re not going to all of a sudden see his murder count double.

Zibby:  You guys, thank you so much for coming.

Yeardley:  Thank you.

Zibby:  Thank you Paul Holes.

[cheers and applause]

Paul:  Thank you very much.

Zibby:  Thank you for the work that you do.

Yeardley:  Thank you to Brightest Young Things for putting on this fabulous Death Becomes Us Festival.

Zibby:  Thank you.

Yeardley:  Everybody go buy Audible Paul’s book.

Paul:  The evil has a name Audible original.

Yeardley:  Indeed. Look for Paul on all channels and all across the television.

Zibby:  Look for Paul all over the universe. And if you haven’t heard our podcast for, we go to small towns across the US and we interview detectives on big crimes that happen in small town USA. And Detectives Dan and Dave, you want to say hey and bye?

Dan:  Thanks for coming out, everyone. We really appreciate it.

Paul:  Thank you very much.

Yeardley:  Thank you.

Paul:  Thank you.

Dave:  And this is Dave. Thanks for coming out, everybody. We really appreciate it.


Yeardley:  Small Town Dicks is produced by Zibby Allen and Yeardley Smith and coproduced by Detectives Dan and Dave.

Zibby:  This episode was edited by Logan Heftel, Yeardley Smith, and Zibby Allen.

Yeardley:  Music for the show was composed by John Forest. Our associate producer is Erin Gaynor and our books are cooked and cats wrangled by Ben Cornwell.

Zibby:  If you like what you hear and want to stay up to date with the show, head on over to and become our pal on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @smalltowndicks. We love hearing from our Small Town Fam, so hit us up.

Yeardley:  Yeah. And also, we have a YouTube channel where you can see trailers for past and forthcoming episodes and we’re part of Stitcher Premium now.

Zibby:  That’s right. If you choose to subscribe, you’ll be supporting our podcast. That way we can keep going to small towns across the country and bringing you the finest in rare true crime cases, told, as always, by the detectives who investigated them. Thanks for listening, Small Town Fam.

Yeardley:  Nobody’s better than you.

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