GSK Resolution · Athlete A · Perfect Art Heist

Plus: Another telling of a well-worn tale

As expected, the Golden State Killer has entered a guilty plea. The SF Chronicle reports that 74-year-old former police officer Joseph DeAngelo admitted to 26 charges of kidnapping and murder Monday as part of a plea deal to avoid the death penalty.

According to Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Thien Ho, DeAngelo made a partial confession when he was arrested in 2018, a bizarre echo of The Jinx’s hot mic scene. From the East Bay Times:

Sitting alone in an interview room, DeAngelo began talking to himself, according to Ho, saying: “I did all that. … I didn’t have the strength to push him out. He made me. He went with me. It was like, in my head, I mean, he’s a part of me.”

“I didn’t want to do those things. I pushed Jerry out and had a happy life. I did all those things; I’ve destroyed their lives. … I raped. So now I’ve gotta pay the price.”

As part of the plea, DeAngelo also agreed to “admit responsibility” for about 60 rapes investigators believe he committed — but that he can’t be prosecuted for, as the statute of limitations for charges in those cases has expired. DeAngelo is expected to be sentenced to 11 consecutive sentences of life without parole, during a future hearing — likely to be held in a Sacramento State University ballroom, to allow for social distancing — at which his victims will address him regarding the corrosive effect he had on their lives. — EB

A new Netflix doc tackles the abuse scandal at USA Gymnastics. Athlete A details the athletic org’s attempts to cover up the sexual assault allegations against Dr. Larry Nassar, the doctor accused by over 156 women of rape and other forms of sexual misconduct. It dropped last Wednesday, and remains (per Netflix in) “#4 in the US” as of Monday night.

Associated Press reviewer Jake Coyle says the doc is “one of the best of the many powerful #MeToo-era documentaries to delve into stories of powerful men and abuse,” and warns that “you may never again watch America's pursuit for gold with quite the same enthusiasm.” If you’ve yet to watch it, it’s available here. — EB

There’s a new movie in the works about the Black Donnellys massacre. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Mayans M.C. actress Sarah Bolger will star in Black Donnelly's (yes, there is an apostrophe. No, I don’t know why), a dramatic adaptation of the 1880 case in which an entire Ontario family (the Donnellys) were slain by an angry mob.

It’s a popular story, popular enough that the remarkably extensive Wikipedia entry on the case lists 13 various adaptations of the incident. Plus, the songs! Seriously, there are at least five songs about the case!

Production on the film is set to begin next year, and so far Bolger (who will play matriarch Johannah Donnelly) is the only cast member that’s been announced. The film will be directed by Adam McDonald, a Canadian person and director of a Netflix property called Slasher Solstice, so, yeah. — EB

Forget longreads, now we’re all about cartoons. Sarah flagged this delightful Bloomberg piece on an art theft that wasn’t, an illustrated explainer on a 2018 hacking case in which the purchase price for John Constable’s A View of Hampstead Heath: Child’s Hill, Harrow in the Distance went to a mysterious third party instead of its intended recipient.

Publications like ArtNet have been on the case for a while: The case is basically about a hacked email, but it’s arguably an art heist in which no criminals actually made contact with any actual art. But don’t listen to me; let the elephants, frogs, and mice explain it. — EB

Just kidding! Longreads are great! In fact, Best Evidence contrib Margaret Howie recommended this one for its headline alone: “Murder in Old Barns” is about one specific murder in one specific old barn.

The case in question is the death of Elmer Yuill, who was shot to death as he worked in his barn. That was 1991, and the case remains unsolved, despite a $150,000 reward offered in 2017. What gives? Here’s the yarn. — EB

Wednesday on Best Evidence: It’s The Blotter Presents Episode 149! Sarah is joined by Michael Dunn to discuss I'll Be Gone In The Dark and the “Prom Mom” episode of Murder Made Me Famous.

What is this thing? This should help. Follow The Blotter @blotterpresents on Twitter and Instagram, and subscribe to The Blotter Presents via the podcast app of your choice. You can also call or text us any time at 919-75-CRIME.