‘I’ll Be Gone in the Dark' Episode 2: Michelle McNamara did NOT find the Golden State Killer through cufflinks

‘I’ll Be Gone in the Dark' Episode 2: Michelle McNamara did NOT find the Golden State Killer through cufflinks
Michelle McNamara (HBO)

“I think I found him,” crime-write Michelle McNamara, who died in April 2016, told her husband, Patton Oswalt, at the time. Obsessed with the Golden State Killer, McNamara had sleepless nights thinking about the serial killer and rapist, who was also nicknamed te East Area Rapist and the Original Night Stalker. He had over 13 murders and more than 50 rapes to his name from 1974 to 1986 

The Golden State Killer is said to have stolen gold cufflinks monogrammed with the initials “NR” from one of his victims. McNamara asked detectives if they had ever looked for the cufflinks on eBay. The answer was no. Taking it upon herself to do so McNamara searched day and night for the items online. Working from behind a screen she probably did more than the detectives could do on the job and was astounded by the results.

She found the item identical to the ones in police documents. Titled ‘Reign of Terror’, the second episode of ‘I’ll Be Gone in the Dark' ends with that scene and viewers may have to wait another week to find out what really happened after that. However, the mystery has intrigued many fans and they can't stop wondering how McNamara's sleuthing was instrumental in hunting down the killer.

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


"She did not help solve the actual case, though she did manage to track down a pair of cufflinks that the killer stole and pawned. She found them being sold online for a vintage clothing store. Nice to have, but she did not point them to DeAngelo," one viewer posted on a Reddit thread. Another said, "I’m confused everyone’s mad they said she didn’t help solve the case? I haven’t read it but want to know, Did she mention Joseph DeAngelo in her book as a suspect? Is that why they tested the DNA?"

Many wondered if she was the one who led the police to the DNA evidence. "She likely brought up or cleared suspects or alibis or circumstantial evidence that led to the pursuit of a witness or informant whose story didn't add up, or whose DNA was overlooked because his medical history was locked up in VA records, or on file but not pinged in a database search. There is a myriad of possibilities that her digging shed light on a previously overlooked, unaccounted for or missing corroboration that pegged this man," one comment read.

However, many dismissed her attempts and pointed out how the police said nothing came from her book. "The press conference said nothing came from her book, as far as the investigation and arrest," one said and another posted, "No, she never mentioned DeAngelo by name. Law enforcement never mentioned his name in 42 years. Of trying to find a serial killer that was one of them."

‘I'll Be Gone In The Dark’ airs every Sunday at 10 pm ET on HBO.

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