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True Crime/Cold Case Files     EAR Crime Index

The Case of the East Area Rapist AKA The Original Night Stalker

261 Rape

Victim No. 5, WFA Age 29

October 5, 1976

About 6:30 a.m.

Woodpark Way

Citrus Heights

Selected Target

East Area Rapist

  He is the real life Michael Myers. He looked like the average teen, except for his morose eyes. Yet he is the No. 1 serial offender in history. He was so careful, he is known only by his DNA. The East Area Rapist, as he was known, struck California communities for 10 years— 1976-1986. Toward the end he became a murderer now known as the Original Night Stalker. He has 50 rapes and 12 murders to his record. Then he vanished. He would be about 58 years old now, living what appears a normal life. These are the files on his crimes.


  Victim, 29 year old WFA, called the sheriffs on September 20, 1976, reporting a break-in. While going about vacuuming, victim, a mother, noticed some mud/dirt on her 3 year old son’s bedroom carpet under his window. This window overlooks the backyard. Her first thought was to check for missing valuables. In doing this she was surprised to discover that she was missing some costume/inexpensive jewelry. Since the expensive jewelry had not been touched, she at first thought she might have mislaid the inexpensive. However, in going through her drawers she had the subjective sense that someone had carefully gone through them already.

     Upon going into the backyard with the Responding Officer, she accompanied him to her son’s bedroom window where the deputy noticed that someone had stepped in mud under the window. He then noticed pry marks on the screen and window lock.

     The subjective sense that someone had gone through her drawers was underscored when both she and the deputy noticed a blue sock on the backyard lawn. Victim recognized it as belonging to her husband.

     Responding Officer (a deputy sheriff) surmised that kid/s had broken into the house and stolen inconsequential jewelry, using the sock as a glove so as not to leave fingerprints. Since nothing of value was taken, and there had been no vandalizing, this seemed reasonable.

     In questioning victim about anything unusual, victim admitted to getting “hang-up” phone calls for about 2 weeks already (thus commencing in early September.) There was someone on the other end, but they wouldn’t speak. They then hung up normally.

     Responding Officer filed report.

     Victim continued to receive hang-up phone calls, however. As the calls continued, victim began to become unnerved. Victim’s husband was a captain in the Air Force, and victim herself Commutemap-iconwas in the Reserves, being stationed at Travis AFB in Fairfield (toward the Bay Area on Highway 80). Victim’s husband was frequently gone all day, from early morning until evening. Fairfield is quite a commute from the area east of Sacramento.

     On October 3, 1976, victim received the last of the hang-up phone calls. She became irate at the caller, for it was obvious someone was on the other end. She told them to stop this. Without any strong emotion, clearly annunciated in a whisper, a voice finally spoke from the other end. “I’m going to kill your husband.”

     Whether caller intended more, we do not know. Victim hung up immediately and checked the windows and doors to make sure they were locked. Victim’s husband was not available at base when she called. She then called the sheriffs. A deputy did respond, but there was little he could do but calm her by suggesting kids were at fault yet again. She went next door to her neighbor, with her 3 year old boy in tow, and waited with the neighbor for her husband to return.

     Nothing transpired on Monday, October 4.

     In the early morning hours of Tuesday, October 5, victim’s husband got up as usual and prepared to go to Travis AFB. Husband left the home around 6:30 a.m. At this time victim was still in bed, with her 3 year old son, who had crawled in just minutes before. Victim heard husband close front door. Only minutes passed and victim heard a series of clicks, as if a light switch was being turned on and off. Source of the clicks could not be audibly determined.

     However, there was little time. Victim heard footsteps running down hall. There appearing in her bedroom doorway was a masked man. The mask only had holes for the eyes. A deadly butcher_knifeknife was raised over his head, and in this pose he padded toward the victim. She drew her son to her bosom and clutched him there. She could not even scream because of her fright.

   “Please don’t hurt us, please don’t hurt us,” she repeated. “I’ll tell you where my money is. Just please take it and leave us.”

     “Shut up!” the masked intruder snapped through clenched teeth.  It was an angry whisper.

     He repeated this a number of times and eventually the victim just whimpered in submission. Both she and her child were tied by the masked intruder. He tied her hands behind her back and used the sheets to tie her legs. Bound at both legs and arms, the boy was set on the floor. Assailant kept calming victim by saying he only wanted money.

     Masked intruder put the knife to her throat and pushed it in and out slightly. He did not draw blood. He warned her that if she did not do what he wanted, he would kill them both. As before, he only said he wanted money. Victim then heard him tearing clothes or sheets in the room. He left the room and wandered the house. He punctuated his roaming by coming back to the bedroom and checking on her. Before his final return, she heard him move a chair by the front door. Finally, he returned, said he had the money and was going to leave.

   This ruse was intentional. She relaxed a bit. It was silent now. Then she stiffened with fear. Towels were being torn near the bed. The assailant had been standing there quietly and was now tearing bath towels into strips.

     Assailant then put his penis in her bound hands and told her “Play with it.”

     She attempted to do so, but complained that her hands were tied too tightly.

     “Shut up!” he snapped instead.

     He untied her feet and then raped her. He complimented her on the size of her genitalia, and said how he liked it. He made definite references as if he knew her and her husband. He said she was attractive when he saw her at the club, implying apparently the officer’s club at the base (Travis AFB). He also asked her if his penis was like the “captain’s.” After he finished raping her, he placed his penis in her numb hands and told her to “play with it” again.

     He now told her he was going to the kitchen to make something for himself. She heard the frying pan being used. After a while the house was silent. She waited and listened. Nothing. Victim got up and made it out the backdoor and called for the neighbor’s child for help.


Sheriffs detectives discovered that the house had been ransacked. About $160.00 had been stolen, no more. The rapist had entered through the boy’s bedroom window again. He left through the back door. Detectives also noted the presence of white shoelaces amidst the torn towels. They did not belong to the household.

     The boy had not been harmed. He thought the rapist was a doctor examining his mother.

     A bloodhound was used in this case. He found the trace of the assailant and followed it to the backyard fence. Sheriffs followed the hound through the uncultivated field behind the house, DSC05504-50%-iconthrough an orchard being bulldozed for development, and then onto a Shadowbrook, a street behind the development.

   A canvass of the neighborhood uncovered witnesses who had seen a strange man, as much as 4 days before, early in the morning. He drove a dark green car like a Chevy Vega. In one encounter, at 6:15 a.m. a few days prior to the rape, a homeowner on Shadowbrook/Cookson stood on her porch and was surprised to see this man stare back at her from her driveway. After a moment he got into his “Vega” and drove off. chevy_vega_2_71

   Further underscoring that this person with the Vega may have been the rapist is the fact that the bloodhound vectored, that is, lost the scent at the area where the “Vega” was said to have been parked. An oil spot marked where the car had been parked.

   The very morning of the attack at 7 a.m. a witness had come out of his house and notice the “Vega” parked in the same spot. It was gone 5by 8:30 a.m.


Victim recalled that the rapist wore a khaki mask, with only eye holes. He also wore a jacket, but she could not remember the color. She did not remember anything else. Judging by his figure in the doorway, she estimated he was about 5 foot 9 inches. He was lean. He had a small penis. He spoke with clenched teeth, in an angry, threatening whisper.

     One other thing is noteworthy. The bloodhound shook and slobbered and went to pieces when finding the miscreant’s scent. This indicated to the handler that the miscreant had a disease or was a heavy duty drug offender, his chemistry being so changed the dog could detect it was different from a normal human scent.




Single story, detached house with single car garage on a steep grade, with back of house to to field.


There can be no question that the EAR had waited for his victim’s husband to leave the house. The earlier break-in, the weeks of telephone calls, meant the EAR had long decided on this victim. She must have meant something particularly significant to him. This is underscored by the time of morning that he struck— dawn light. At no other time was she accessible. This would also explain why he parked across a field and an orchard along a quiet residential street. Shadowbrook was perfectly situated. It was on the underbelly, so to speak, of Dewey Drive, a main thoroughfare between Greenback/Highway 80 and Madison and thus Crestview where he had struck before. Thus it was close to a quick escape but concealed from early morning traffic.

     It was a bold strike at this time of morning. It required extra preparation, and this he had done.

     It is unfortunate that the victim could not recall more of EAR’s outfit. Khaki is a military color, and this was the first time he used a mask with that color. He knew he was attacking military personnel. 

     Witness descriptions of the man seen days before in the area are sketchy. But when added DSC05516-50%-iconto the phone calls which victim was receiving, rapist was obviously prowling the area for some time. The car is significant. This is the first time a car, possibly a small Chevrolet, is associated with the rapist.

     This may be the same car he used in Crestview, but there are no witnesses there. All we know is that there he had driven the victim’s car about a mile and then ditched it.

     As in the other cases (save No. 1 and 4) rapist went out of his way to indicate he knew the victim. He mentioned the “club” which victim took to mean the Travis Air Force Base Officer’s Club. He also specifically noted that her husband was a “captain.” Due to an encounter with an odd fellow at the base earlier in the week, victim had a subjective sense that the rapist may have been from the base. She described this man at the base as being fair, lightweight, speaking through lips that didn’t move much.


Files on the EAR/ONS




A Word About Rape

   Notes on Personal Investigation

Logic verses Instinct

The Folklore of “Copycat”




The Summer of ’76

Victim #1
— The Beginning—
Rancho Cordova

Victim #2
—Careful Selection—
Del Dayo

     Victim #3
— Foiled Attack—
 Rancho Cordova

Victim #4
— Violent Improvisation—

   Victim #5
— Selected Target—
 Citrus Heights

Victim #6
— Curious Tactics—
 Rancho Cordova

     Victim #7
— Baring Down—
 Del Dayo 

     Victim #8
— Interrupted Arrival—
 Rancho Cordova

Analysis of First 8 Strikes

Victim #9
— Revealing Mistake—
 Citrus Heights

Victim #10
— Fair Oaks—

  Living Dangerously
— The Year of the EAR—

Victim #11
— Cats and Fields—

Victim #12—
 Blind Spot Reveals—
 Citrus Heights

Victim #13
— Unexpected Jogger—

Ripon Court Shooting

 Victim #14
— Over the River . . .
and Through the Woods—

Victim #15
— Tactical Misuse—
 Rancho Cordova

Victim #16
— Opportunity Knocks a Clue—

Victim #17
— Unexpected Spoke in the Hub—

Victim #18
— Moving Upwards—
La Riviera

Victim #19
— Presentiment
 Impromptu Danger—

Victim #20
— Blind Spot
 and a
Stop Watch—
 Citrus Heights

Victim #21
— Tactical 1—
Del Dayo

Victim #22
— Tactical 2—
South Sacramento


  After the Lull—
1977’s Autumn of Fear


Victim #23
— Tactical 3—

Victim #24
— Switcharoo—
 La Riviera

Victim #25
— Follow Diablo—
 Foothill Farms

Victim #26
—  Dump Truck Biker—

Victim #27
— Condo Commando—
La Riviera

Victim #28
— Tail of Diablo—
 Foothill Farms

Victim #29/30
— Assault!—

Maggiore Double Murders
— Critical Clue—
 Rancho Cordova

   Yet Another Year— 1978


       Witness in Charcoal

Victim #31
— Distant Roaming—

Victim #31B
— Back to Rancho—
 Rancho Cordova

Victim #32
— Little Pocket, Big Clue—
 South Sacramento

Victim #33
— The Deep Dig—

Victim #34
— Co-Ed—

Victim #35
— Back—

Victim #36
— Forth—

Silent Victim
— Lateral—

Victim #37
— Forth North—

A New East—
 Contra Costa Corridor

Victim #38
—  Surreal Schedule—

Victim #39
— Opportunity Kicks—

Victim #40
— Cats and Fields Again—
 San Ramon

Victim #41
— The Way to San Jose—
 San Jose

Victim #42
— Sobbing in San Jose—
 San Jose

Victim #43
— Danville—
 Playing it Close


   No Stopping Him— 1979

Lacing with Ligatures— Thunderbird Place

Victim #43B
— Auld Lange Syne—
 Rancho Cordova

Victim #44
— Along the 680—

Victim #45
— Follow the Cats—
 Walnut Creek

Victim #46
— Sticking to Routine—

Victim #47
— Walnut Creek—
 Dig and Retreat

Victim #48
— Shouted Out—

Victim #49
—  The Unsuspected —


—Original Night Stalker—

— Doctor Duo—
 Dec 30, 1979

— Cats & Murder—
 March 13, 1980

Laguna Niguel
— Exclusive—
August 19, 1980

— Home Alone—
 Feb. 6, 1981

— Dig & Retreat Again—
 July 27, 1981

— Epitome of MO—
May 4, 1986


         Phantom Predator—
  Analysis of EAR Crime Spree

       Analysis of EAR Prowling MO

Portrait of Terror

The Lair of an Arch Rapist

     The Mystery of the Silent Dog

Phone Calls


Persons of Interest





Night Predator
Files on the East Area Rapist/Original Night Stalker

The Website of Gian J. Quasar