Crime - Sacto 911

East Area Rapist suspect faces 4 new murder charges in Santa Barbara County killings

Prosecutors in Santa Barbara County filed four murder charges Thursday against East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer suspect Joseph James DeAngelo, bring to 12 the number of murder charges he faces in four California counties.

District Attorney Joyce Dudley announced the charges had been filed in the 1979 slayings of Robert Offerman and Debra Manning and the 1981 slayings of Cheri Domingo and Gregory Sanchez.

"Violent cold cases never go cold for the victims, they never do," Dudley said in a brief news conference outside her office.

The charges, all filed with special circumstances that could make DeAngelo eligible for the death penalty or life in prison, are in addition to eight murder counts filed earlier in other counties.

DeAngelo, 72, has been charged in Sacramento County with the 1978 slayings of Brian and Katie Maggiore, a young couple shot to death while walking their poodle in Rancho Cordova. Their deaths are the earliest attributed to the East Area Rapist, and DeAngelo is due in court Monday for a hearing in that case.

DeAngelo also faces four murder counts in Orange County and two in Ventura County. Dudley said she plans to meet with district attorneys from all the counties Friday at her office to discuss where and when his trial will take place.

No decision is expected Friday, but Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert has said the case could be moved to Southern California, where the bulk of the murders occurred, as long as all counties' prosecutors can participate jointly.

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