Court Date | April 10, 2019 – One Year Later, DeAngelo Earns the Death Penalty as Possible Consequence

It’s nearly 8pm and I am swimming in a hot mess of feelings. I might not even be able to write everything tonight because I need sleep and a chance to form my thoughts. Today had a lot of surprises and some of them are really bothering me. Don’t worry. I’ll explain. But I first need to clarify my thoughts. Meanwhile, I can knock out some of the basic, non-controversial stuff. Let’s do this! 

First, a paragraph about the Planned Parenthood Capitol Advocacy Day.

It was a great way to start the day. I’ve always supported Planned Parenthood because I know they serve people who truly need help. I have to say, I don’t even think I had a clue about how focused they are on protecting our right to healthcare. Talk about woke! Setting aside abortions (because I don’t want to trigger anyone), the outreach, education and accessibility this organization is providing blew my mind. I need to do some research to make sure what I heard is true, so I’m going to write more about this later. All I can say is you should not be afraid of this organization. It’s truly worth our support. Couple photos below.

Court was different today. Survivors took a back seat to politics.

Didn’t expect to type that sentence. I guess I will walk right into one of the weird things that happened today. Typically, we survivors meet on the corner with Victim Services and we walk in together ahead of everyone. It’s happened that way every other time. Today our squad was the last to enter (but still ahead of general public whom I’m not sure ever get in). We entered the courtroom to be greeted by a wall of media – typically it’s been a pool camera and sound guy. The first nearly three rows of the gallery were filled with people in dark clothing (that’s the uniform lawyers wear). We ended up having to find seats where we could and that kept us from sitting together. This sounds worse than it was. Let’s say this is how it felt: crowded, staged and for the first time, we had a different role. But then, it seems only one survivor knew what was going to happen today. [This is an intentional cliff hanger because I need to do just a bit of research before I open my big yap. If what I’m thinking is true, I’m pretty angry.]

DeAngelo is doing great on Keto. Absolutely no visible body fat.

Imagine a packed courtroom, media piled on top of each other to your right. A dozen lawyers for the prosecution and two for the defense. The room is silenced promptly at 1:30 and a different judge walks in! No adorable Judge Sweet. But it’s all good. We quietly wait to get started and then I realize, DeAngelo hasn’t arrived yet. The bailiff is peeking through a cracked door waiting – for what I think is – an elevator to deliver DeAngelo to the hallway that’s just outside the cage. We wait for a little bit (not that long but it’s noticeable since we’re all quiet) and then he walks in.

He looks exactly the same and yet smaller and more frail. Frail in that he seems to have finally lost all body fat. He has no butt. His arms were much smaller (circumference). He still stands at parade-rest with his mouth looking like it’s hanging open (I’m not able to see him from the front so until I watch a television report, I can’t tell if it was actually open). He remains unremarkable.

New judge (I’m too lazy to get up and get my notes right now to find his name); new judge is great and immediately denies the defense motion to once again prevent the media from participating. This is going to be DeAngelo’s lawyer’s pro forma motion every time. Then, in an unexpected move, the judge said, we are here today for an announcement. (We are? I thought we were just here to check on how discovery was going?) At that point, the different district attorneys got up and announced they were going to pursue the death penalty. It was a dramatic moment and I didn’t realize that this is how things work – that it’s done in an announcement. I guess it usually happens much later in the process. Since our case is a horse of a different color, this is how they did it. I’ll admit, even though I oppose the death penalty, it was incredibly satisfying to have them say it county by county so that DeAngelo could hear it.

After the announcement, we were done. Hearing dismissed.

I have so much more to say…but I need to sleep first.We did get together afterward, and I want to talk about that too! Thank you for all the support. I do read your comments and messages and I love the squad on Twitter.

I just got off the phone with a reporter friend and I think I might break some news tomorrow.

Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
Seconds before this shot, this poor man feel into the brick box behind him. He bounced up and smiled for the camera! Look at that tree.
Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
I’ve never been at something with rally signs before.
Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
The guy on the right looking at me for the win! I believe he wasn’t allowed to eat lunch until after this shot.
Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
Jennifer Newsom, First Partner, and Dr. Leana Wen. Both women were brilliant, informed and measured. I have now followed both on Twitter. Smart women.
Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
I am honestly ashamed I hadn’t thought of this before. The homeless don’t go to the bathroom and open the cupboard when they get their period. What do they do? Welcome to the Homeless Period Project. These kits are shared with women who need them.
Planned Parenthood Advocacy Day at the California State Capitol 2019
I am smitten with this building. Its gorgeous and it reminds me of my dad. Smells like law inside. Please note the palm tree. The wind was unpleasant!

5 thoughts on “Court Date | April 10, 2019 – One Year Later, DeAngelo Earns the Death Penalty as Possible Consequence

  1. Thank you for the post.

    Personally, I view the prosecution going for the death penalty as a rather moot point in this trial, to be honest. Even if DeAngelo gets it, and even if the moratorium were to be lifted by another governor sometime in the future, DeAngelo would (with 99 % certainty) die of old age before he is ever executed. It would be a symbolic verdict only, and maybe it would have some value in the eyes of those who support capital punishment, or bring some satisfaction to some of the survivors. But it is unlikely to put any real pressure on him.

    Anyway, we know that, no matter what happens, DeAngelo will spend the rest of his life in prison. And he surely knows that, too. So the question that interests me most is: is DeAngelo going to cooperate at some point? And what would be most likely to entice him to do so?

    He doesn’t seem to be the attention-seeking type of serial killer like the Zodiac or BTK were. While he did make some crank calls to victims and LE, he never extensively communicated with LE or the press to flaunt his crimes. So grand-standing is probably not going to be a motivating factor for him.

    I believe that, if anyone can get DeAngelo to cooperate, it would be his family. He and his wife separated around 1991, but he was living with one of his daughters and a grand-daughter at the time of his arrest, which suggests that he was on good terms (or at least not-terrible-terms) with at least one of his children. Moreover, former work colleagues have described DeAngelo as a “family man” and a “great father” who kept working for seven additional years into retirement age so he could pay for his daughters’ college education (see the “Golden State Killer: Main Suspect” documentary).

    Conventional wisdom used to be that psychopaths have no feelings, for anyone, period. But there is recent research, as well as testimony from people like Kerri Rawson (daughter of BTK Killer Dennis Rader), which suggests that things aren’t as clear as that. It would seem that psychopaths are, in fact, capable of feelings, but they have a more shallow affect than normal people and are much better at “compartmentalizing” different parts of their life (which helps when you have a double life as a family man / serial killer).

    So, long story short, I think it is possible that there is a part of DeAngelo’s personality that genuinley loves and cares for his daughters, and that if they put pressure on him to confess and spare them a trial, he will.

    Then again, there is the flipside: there might be a part of DeAngelo which feels so ashamed, now that he had his horrible double life exposed and the “family man” facade taken away, that he can never bring himself to actually confess. This seems to have been the case with Ted Bundy – he was offered a deal where he’d get life in prison for a confession, instead of the death penalty, but he just couldn’t bring himself to do it. Robert Keppel, one of the investigators in the Bundy case, wrote in his book: “A long-term serial killer erects powerful barriers to his guilt, walls of denial that can sometimes never be breached.”

    We will see what happens. In any case, I have enormous sympathy for his family, his children especially – they are victims too, in a sense, and they must be going through utter hell after the revelations of last year.

    Thanks again for the post, and I’m looking forward to reading what else you have to say about yesterday’s hearing.

    1. Your thinking is very similar to mine. I agree the only thing that he might care about are his kids. And yes, Kerri has said it was confusing. If only for his kids, he would confess and let this be put to bed so they can live their lives… I have no idea if anyone is counseling him on that front.

  2. As soon as I heard he was going to be in the courtroom today, I knew you would be there and would provide your ever interesting recap/perspective.  It’s like a horror film that terrifies us but we can’t not watch. Looking forward to hearing more.

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