The woman whose name the alleged “Golden State Killer” Joseph DeAngelo uttered during a 1970s attack – his ex-fiancee Bonnie – faced the accused serial rapist and murderer in court on Wednesday, when she told him through a friend that "even a gun pointed at her face" wasn't enough for her to agree to be with him, according to multiple reports.
Victim after victim took their turn over the last two days to describe how DeAngelo, a now-74-year-old California man and former police officer, wreaked havoc on their lives and the lives of their loved ones.
"Even a gun pointed at her face could not make her choose you."
— Jane Carson-Sandler, speaking on Bonnie Ueltzen’s behalf
Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Michael Bowman will formally sentence DeAngelo to consecutive life prison sentences on Friday under a plea deal that will spare him the death penalty.
Although Bonnie Ueltzen, 69, was not permitted to personally deliver her own statement, according to the Los Angeles Times, accuser Jane Carson-Sandler took the liberty of sharing some of Ueltzen’s words.
Bonnie Ueltzen looks at Joseph James DeAngelo, her former fiancee, during the second day of victim impact statements at the Gordon D. Schaber Sacramento County Courthouse on August 19, 2020, in Sacramento, California. (SANTIAGO MEJIA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
A video from inside the courtroom shared by KCRA News shows how Carson-Sandler, who was raped in 1976, concludes her own witness statement and adds: “I also want to especially thank a friend that’s accompanying me today. That friend is Bonnie.”
Within moments, Ueltzen is seen standing up, removing her mask, and appearing to stare directly at DeAngelo, as he’s seated flanked by his attorneys on either side.
“If Bonnie were able to speak, Joe, she would want you to know that as just a teenager 50 years ago, she broke her engagement to you when she realized you had become manipulative and abusive,” Carson-Sandler said, roughly eight minutes into the news clip. “When you thought you could kidnap her and force her to marry you, even a gun pointed at her face could not make her choose you.”
DeAngelo appears to stare straight ahead as Carson-Sandler continues: “When she saw who you really were, she was done with you.”
Bonnie remained silent throughout the address.
Carson-Sandler was the fifth person to have been raped by DeAngelo, who was at the time known as the East Area Rapist, the LA Times reported.
After a later attack – No. 37, in 1978 – a victim told police DeAngelo repeatedly uttered the phrase: ‘I hate you, Bonnie,’” according to multiple reports. Ueltzen’s identity was later revealed during an in-depth interview for HBO docu-series, “I’ll be Gone in the Dark.”
During the interview for the show, Ueltzen detailed how DeAngelo showed up at her bedroom with a gun one night after she had broken off the engagement.
“I can see that ‘I hate you, Bonnie’ was a result of your frustration because you lost control over her, but she bears none, none of that responsibility for your violent choices,” Carson-Sandler told DeAngelo on Wednesday. “And we consider her one of us – the sister survivors of your malicious attacks.”
Joseph James DeAngelo, right, and public defender Joseph Cress speak together during the first day of victim impact statements at the Gordon D. Schaber Sacramento County Courthouse on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020, in Sacramento, Calif. (Santiago Mejia/San Francisco Chronicle via AP, Pool)
“When you are wheeled away to begin your sentence,” she concluded, “you’ll return in Bonnie’s life to that forgotten and insignificant place – gone from her life forever.”
In June, DeAngelo pleaded guilty to 13 murders and 13 rape-related charges between 1975 and 1986. He also publicly admitted to dozens more sexual assaults for which the statute of limitations had expired.
All told, prosecutors said he admitted harming 87 victims at 53 separate crime scenes spanning 11 California counties in the plea deal that spares him the death penalty.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.