Top Five Reasons Having the DeAngelo Trial in Sacramento is Pure Gold

When the FBI released the news about the Golden State Killer, the Orlando shooting massacre happened and took over the news. Today, when the DeAngelo press conference went live, Cohen was heading to court and the Manafort verdict was coming in. Our poor law enforcement folks can’t get a break! But it’s all good. On the day of the arrest, they owned the conversation with the best news ever. 

UPDATE: Rather flattering…Madison Wade from
ABC 10 in Sacramento turned this blog into a news story on August 23rd!

I got a call just before the press conference from Ventura District Attorney Gregory Totten. He wanted to let me know the venue for the trial would be Sacramento. I let out a little “whoop”. I couldn’t be happier. I was thinking we’d be in Ventura or maybe Orange County, but Sacramento hadn’t really been discussed as a viable option. And yet, these folks came up with the best decision possible given the scope and breadth of the crimes.

We also learned DeAngelo will be arraigned (again) this Thursday at 1:30 in Dept 61 (the courtrooms that are at the jail) on 13 more charges. At this point, we might as well turn these charges into trading cards. There are so many. I’m going to drive up and go to court. We have to keep-up the pressure (this is how it works in my head: he knows we are there, he hates that we are and the very idea that we are in the courtroom eats away at him as he wonders over and over how he got caught. Also in my head, ice cream has no calories – it’s a happy place).

But let’s get back to it. Here are my top five reasons for why it’s amazing that this trial will be in Sacramento.

It’s Affordable

Apparently there is reimbursement for victims who want to attend trials. I’m late to the party on this front but I will be catching up shortly. Reimbursement couldn’t hurt. I was running-the-numbers on how much it might cost to stay in Ventura or Orange County and it wasn’t looking good. It’s just more expensive to live down there – whether that’s an AirBnB or hotel. But in Sacramento, most folks won’t need housing and for those of us that do, it won’t be awful. If I can get my relatives to start building now, I should have a min-house to live in by the time the trial rolls around (I’m kidding – they all live up by Rescue, gorgeous but too far). But I have been threatening to buy a Vanagon (mind drifts off into land where no one can find me and I can sleep and work anywhere). Maybe I can find a Burning Man cast-off next month – could have spoilers and fire!

 Sacramento Has Excellent Journalistic Reporting

I could name drop here – I actually started to but realized I was leaving people out – so I won’t. But damn, there has been good reporting coming out of Sacramento. I have met reporters who are conscientious, connected and genuinely interested in us (the people featured in their stories) and how this criminal has changed the community. Sure, half of these reporters weren’t even born when the crimes started, but that doesn’t matter. They are covering all aspects of the story with respect, thoughtfulness and clarity. And it is appreciated. (Just busted myself up laughing thinking about how to write a warning to LA reporters who drive-up and find out tomato trucks throw tomatoes at you on Interstate 5 – what is wrong with me!?)

Sacramento Extended Law Enforcement Deserves It

Not to take anything away from my Southern California crime solvers, but clearly, based on quantity alone, Sacramento has earned the right to host this case. I realize everyone will be involved in actually trying the case but this means local law enforcement can drop in, get scoop and otherwise participate in this trial. This is bittersweet because we won’t be able to include many of the statute of limitations-expired cases (rapes). But, as I understand it, the District Attorneys want as many folks to participate as possible, so now this will be easier to have impact reports from victims that will round out the murders. That was a weird sentence to write.

Many Survivors Can Attend

Even if just for a day, having the trial in Northern California means more of us can attend and support one another – even if that’s some seven years from now – when the trial actually starts. DeAngelo has already been in jail nearly four months (see the count-up clock at the top of this blog). This thing is going to go on forever and many of us remain in the area. Being able to participate doesn’t bring closure (at least not for me), but it does mean justice and accountability. Every time I see him in that orange jumpsuit and handcuffs, I get a small measure of satisfaction.

This Case Belongs to Sacramento

I’ve long considered myself a Sacramentan. My family has always been in Sac, I went to Davis and then got my master’s at CSU Sacramento. My cousin actually chased after DeAngelo at one point as a reserve police officer. When I initially learned about the rapes in Northern California, I felt connected to everyone up north. Beyond my personal ties, there was nothing that demonstrated  the strength of this community more than what happened at Barnes and Noble. So many people with personal stories of their fear, break-ins, brushes with terror and more. When I say Sacramento, know that I widely stretch my arms to include Visalia and the larger Bay Area. I trust we will not get better support anywhere on the planet than the support we will get in Sacramento.


For everyone and anyone who is feeling like they won’t get justice because their rape kit was lost or expired and you still believe this is your guy – we will represent for you. I’ll have more after court on Thursday. And then I know, I know, I need to get back to blogging. I have a small surgery on Friday and then I’ll be on the mend. Finally!

3 thoughts on “Top Five Reasons Having the DeAngelo Trial in Sacramento is Pure Gold

  1. Thank you for all of your updates. I have always felt so close to this case. I hired Lyman in January 1980 to get back something from an ex-boyfriend. Lyman and Charlene were killed on my 21st birthday. My mom was sure it was my ex-boyfriend who was the murderer. I was sure it was not, but I could never stop wondering about the killings.

    1. I think I read this back then and was going to comment. So interesting you knew him (like 95% of the people in my life never met him!). I also totally get why your mom thought it was your boyfriend. That would have scared the crap outta me! I’m glad you’re okay and please don’t think of them on your birthday!

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