Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Sgt. Paul Belli

Sgt. Paul Belli, of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Homicide Bureau, leads the department's investigation of the East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer.

Video Transcript

My name is Paul Belli. I’m a Sergeant with Sacramento Count Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau.

The one thing in Sacramento is it was so impactful on so many people. Even now all this time later. As we talk to other people, we always get the stories about what was going on in people’s lives back then.  I’ve heard stories of you know fathers essentially sleeping with guns by their bed side, shotguns very close, things of that nature. So it was impactful for a large amount of people.

And the Sherriff’s Department never gave up on investigating that case. As a matter of fact, there are numerous investigators that have long since retired that still work very hard on trying to, you know, make a determination as to who a good suspect would be in this particular case.

I think it’s important not only for those reasons there but for a number of victims, but also so this person is held accountable. Being able to do this for so long and to ruin a great number or at least cut short a great number of lives. I don’t think he should get a pass on that regardless of the amount of time that has passed.

He’s an extremely prolific offender. And I think that all of his offenses did have a ripple effect throughout.  When you look at a number of the sexual assaults that occurred here in Sacramento County, that takes a great toll on the families that were involved in that. You had a number of them that were couples.

So here you have essentially somebody’s wife being raped in their home while their husband is home and unable to do anything about it. That’s very terrorizing. That can only be described to me as somebody who is wanting to develop that terror and create that type of fear.

When you move down into the homicides, they were brutal attacks. Sexually assaulting in the same way with the male subject there and then very often bludgeoning both of them to death, very brutally.

He was a fairly strong individual based on the coroner’s reports that I’ve seen and the type of damage that he was able to do.  And of course that has its own ripple effect throughout families and you now a variety of things like that.

But the other thing we saw in Sacramento County is he was not afraid to kill rather than be discovered. I think when you look at the Brian and the Katie Maggiore, I could see Katie being a … maybe a subject that he was looking at, somebody that he was planning on sexually assaulting. But they were out in that neighborhood for a walk and this individual I believe was seen by both of them and he chased them down and he shot both of them to specifically not be discovered.

There is a Sacramento police case that is most likely East Area rapist.  He gets chased by an 18-year-old boy who almost caught him and rather than being caught, he turns and he fires and he almost kills him as well.  You know he’s not concerned about human life. He enjoys the terror. He enjoys inflicting that type of an emotional type pain on people.

You know $50,000 reward is a fairly substantial sum.  And I think it’s going to generate a lot more interest so that maybe somebody who didn’t initially—or who would not have initially—read that type of a release will take a look at it. Plus it may push somebody over the edge of … who knows something and kind of provide us with that one tip that we need. Just like any homicide investigation, our lifelines are people that give us information. It all boils down to people.

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