Joseph DeAngelo stated that he was “truly sorry” for the crimes he committed just before receiving multiple consecutive life sentences.
The Golden State Killer was a former California police officer who lived a double life as the murderous sociopath who eluded detection for four decades while committing at least 13 killings and dozens of rapes.
The unexpected moment brought gasps from those in the gallery, many of whom sat through an extraordinary four-day sentencing hearing filled with graphic and heart-wrenching testimony from dozens of victims.
The move also reinforced that nobody ever seemed to know what Joseph DeAngelo would do and who he was.
The 74-year-old DeAngelo spoke for only a few seconds after rising from a wheelchair that newly released jail video shows he doesn’t need.
"I listened to all your statements, each one of them, and I’m truly sorry for everyone I’ve hurt,” he said, putting aside the weak, quavering voice he used to plead guilty and also admit to multiple other sexual assaults for which the statute of limitations had expired.
Prosecutors and victims said it was more evidence of a manipulative and vicious criminal who fooled investigators and his own family until he finally admitted victimizing at least 87 people at 53 separate crime scenes spanning 11 California counties.