VISALIA — Joseph DeAngelo, the man authorities believe is the infamous Golden State Killer, will be charged Monday for the shooting death of a Visalia father in 1975, the earliest murder allegation against the suspected serial killer, according to a CBS News report.
The Tulare County District Attorney is expected to file the charges against DeAngelo for the murder of Claude Snelling, a father who was shot to death as he tried to rescue his 17-year-old daughter from the clutches of her attacker. The murder charge would officially tie the suspected Golden State Killer to the “Visalia Ransacker” cases that had many similarities to the later Sacramento and Bay Area rapes and attacks.
Snelling was shot to death in September 1975 after a masked gunman broke into his daughter’s bedroom in the middle of the night, dragging her into the family’s carport.
“That’s when I heard my dad yell and… the man with a ski mask pushed me to the ground, turned, and shot my dad twice as he was coming through the back door,” said Snelling’s daughter Elizabeth Hupp, who spoke to CBS News on Monday.
Snelling died on the way to the hospital.
“He’s always been my hero,” Hupp said. “I would not be here today, I’m sure of it, if it hadn’t been for him.
“In my heart, I believe he’s the one, and that my father was his first victim,” she said.
Tulare County district attorney Tim Ward told CBS News he believes Snelling was the first victim murdered by DeAngelo.
“We’re filing first degree murder charges against Mr. DeAngelo, along with an allegation that he used a firearm in the commission of that murder,” Ward said.
Law enforcement believes DeAngelo killed a dozen other people and carried out more than 50 rapes up and down the state of California during the 1970s and ’80s. …read more
Source:: The Mercury News – Nation, World