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A decade-long search for the "Golden State Killer" may finally be over. A 72-year-old former police officer named Joseph James DeAngelo was arrested on two counts of murder by police in Sacramento.
USA TODAY

The real crime writer Michelle McNamara did not live to see on April 25, 2018, the day the police arrested a suspect in the decades -Investigation about the Golden State killer, a case of serial homicide rape that obsessed in his book I'll be in the dark: Obsessive pursuit of a woman for the Golden State Killer.

But her husband and the great cheerleader, the Emmy-winning actress and comedian Patton Oswalt, who saw her book until its completion and publication in February, did so.

Although he was too "plunged into pain" and grappled with the realities of suddenly becoming a single parent to be actively involved, Oswalt says he and his colleagues collaborated to make the book. "I knew that I could not live and continue with life if this was not solved."

And as fate had it, Oswalt, who paid close attention to the news of the arrest, was scheduled to appear on NBC Late Night With Seth Meyers on the day of the arrests. Instead of connecting to his sitcom, he recounted the momentous day that McNamara never experienced.

"I've been awake since 3 a.m.," he warned his host. "I do not know what this segment is going to be like … This morning I started receiving text messages and alerts, they arrested him today, he's in jail."

Oswalt, who has become an expert on the case, gave Meyers a brief introduction on the Golden State Killer case: "He was responsible for 12 murders and (45) rapes for more than a decade and it had not been discovered for 42 years … The guy's name is (Joseph James) DeAngelo, he was a former Auburn cop, right near the Sacramento area where the rapes started for the first time. "

Oswalt spoke with a palpable sense of relief , pride and satisfaction.

& # 39; ll Gone in the Dark & ​​# 39; by Michelle McNamara (Photo: Harper)

"(McNamara & # 39; s" The book and article that led to the book really increased interest in the case and put a lot of emphasis on this, "he explained." Not to discredit the work that the police and the laboratory technicians did, but it was his dream. "He always said:" I do not care about the credit, I want to know he's in jail. "And now he's stuck. Bracelets are on and it seems that this thing that I so much wanted now is done. "

McNamara died while sleeping at age 46 almost exactly two years before DNA evidence led the Sacramento police to arrest DeAngelo, 72, for eight counts of murder in three California counties, is now trying to link him to 12 other murders and rapes, two of the murders and most sexual assaults took place in the area at the time.

Mey ers asked Oswalt to read aloud his "Letter to an Elder," the epilogue, in which McNamara imagined that the killer was arrested. Many on social media, including Oswalt, have noticed how disturbingly prophetic it was.

She wrote:

"One day soon, you will hear a car stop on the sidewalk and the engine cut off, listen to steps in front of your house, as they did with Edward Wayne Edwards, twenty nine years after having killed Timothy Hack and Kelly Drew, in Sullivan, Wisconsin, as they did with Kenneth Lee Hicks, thirty years after killing Lori Billingsley, in Aloha, Oregon

The doorbell rings.

They have not opened side doors, you've been through a fence for a long time, take one of your hyperactive breaths, clench your teeth, move timidly toward the insistent bells,

This is how it ends for you,

"You'll be silent for always, and I'll go in the dark, "you threatened a victim once.

Open the door, his face.

Walk toward the light."

"And that's what he did today," he said. Oswalt. "And now that he's been caught, you can start linking him to all these other cases, there's all this new evidence, it's amazing, and he's a former cop!"

In a Wednesday tweet, he explained why he would like to have the opportunity to talk to DeAngelo if he turns out to be the Golden State killer: do not gloat or gape, he says, but "to do the questions that (McNamara) wanted them to answer in their "Letter to an Elder" at the end of I'll Gone In The Dark. "

But as the comedian that is He noticed Meyers how obvious the signs were in retrospect. "This sounds like something out of (comedian) John Mulaney is a bit about Law and Order .This is what happened: he left the police when he was caught stealing a hammer and a dog repellent. literally, like you're stealing a hammer in the store?!? Are you buying in the murder shop?

Case first: Who was the Golden State Killer?

Review: How Michelle McNamara's book renewed her interest in the Golden State Killer

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