‘I'll Be Gone In The Dark’ Episode 2 Preview: Why Golden State Killer hunted couples, not just single women?

Following a rush of media coverage in 1977, his boldness escalated, as he shifted his focus from single women and teenagers to include couples too


                            ‘I'll Be Gone In The Dark’ Episode 2 Preview: Why Golden State Killer hunted couples, not just single women?
Golden State Killer (Contra Costa District Attorney's Office)
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HBO's docuseries ‘I'll Be Gone In The Dark’ is an adaptation of crime-writer Michelle McNamara's book while she was obsessed about finding the Golden State Killer. A dark, gritty, and chilling show, it sheds light on serial killer and rapist, popular as East Area Rapist and Original Night Stalker, in those times. Former police officer Joseph James DeAngelo Jr was charged in August 2018 and was officially declared as the Golden State Killer after he pleaded guilty to multiple counts of murder and kidnapping.

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The first episode titled ‘Murder Habit’ encapsulated how he hunted victims in the Sacramento neighborhood and committed at least 13 murders, more than 50 rapes, and over 100 burglaries in California between 1974 and 1986. The episode recorded the gory details of how he raped survivor #10, Kris Pedretti, while she was playing piano three times and the shocking incident stayed fresh in her mind to the extent that she stopped playing piano in the fear that someone was watching her. After the brilliantly directed hour-long episode gave goosebumps to viewers, what will happen as the second episode airs on HBO?

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Titled ‘Reign of Terror’, the official summary reads: "Michelle McNamara reflects on the 1984 murder of her childhood neighbor Kathy Lombardo, which she credits with planting the seed for her lifelong fascination with unsolved crimes. Local detectives who worked the East Area Rapist (EAR) case in the '70s — and citizen detectives who picked up where they left off — discuss the proliferation of serial rape cases in Northern California at the time, discussing an era when victims were often too ashamed to speak out and sexual crime was minimized in the press and the courtroom."

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Joseph James DeAngelo, the Golden State Killer (Getty Images)

"Following a rush of media coverage in 1977, EAR's boldness escalates, as he shifts his focus from single women and teenagers, to include couples as well. Today, several survivors describe these attacks and their aftermath in chilling detail," it further says. The series will go on to document how the Golden State Killer's murders and rapes became a regular habit. Perhaps, it was just a number game for him. In 1977, after heavy media coverage on how the EAR/ONS only chased single mothers and teenagers, he took up the challenge and started hunting for couples. Reports from those times say that he usually broke in through a window or sliding glass door and came in with a mask, holding a handgun with a flashlight in his hand. He then forced the female victims to tie up the male companions and he would then blindfold and gag them with ripped strips of towels.

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The real-life accounts are as horrific as one can imagine. The male victims reported how the bindings were so tight and strong that they felt numb for hours. The Golden State Killer then stacked dishes and utensils on the male counterpart's back, threatening to kill their wives or girlfriends if he heard even one single tiny sound. He would then take the women into the living room and rape them repeatedly, sometimes for several hours. As the documentary comes back with the new episode, it may highlight the real reason why he did so. Was it just to prove a point? Whatever the motive may be, it was clear that the Golden State Killer was following the media closely and wanted all his actions to be documented and recorded.

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The second episode of ‘I'll Be Gone In The Dark’ will premiere on July 5, 2020, at 10 pm ET on HBO.