Patton Oswalt Says Golden State Killer Suspect's Arrest Is 'Bittersweet' After Late Wife's Book on Murders

Oswalt's late wife, Michelle McNamara, attempted to identify the serial killer in her book, I'll be Gone in the Dark

Michelle McNamara, the late wife of actor and comedian Patton Oswalt, made it her mission to catch the Golden State Killer, and wrote a bestselling book, I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, about her extensive efforts.

Now, with the arrest of the man accused of committing 12 murders, 45 rapes and 120 residential burglaries between 1976 and 1986 in California, Oswalt is sharing his emotional reaction on social media.

“One of the more surreal days of my life,” Oswalt said on a video he shared on Instagram and Twitter.

“She would be beyond excited about this. I think this is the definition of ‘bittersweet,'” the actor wrote while sharing a series of tweets and videos on Twitter and Instagram.

McNamara died in her sleep in 2016 at 46. At the time of her death, she had been working on the true crime book investigating the serial killer.

To honor his late wife, Oswalt promised he would finish the book for her. Earlier this year, Oswalt — who writes the afterword — released I’ll Be Gone in the Dark with the help of other contributors.

• For more on the Golden State Killer, watch People Magazine Investigates: Golden State Killer Caught, airing Friday, April 27 at 10 p.m. and Sunday, April 29 at 8 p.m. on Investigation Discovery

McNamara began researching for the book years before she began formally working on it in 2013.

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark is an intimate account of McNamara’s search for the Golden State Killer, who has also been known as the East Area Rapist and the Original Night Stalker.

“She kept coming at him,” Oswalt tweeted Wednesday about McNamara’s unwavering determination to find the unidentified man.

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Referencing McNamara’s Twitter account, Oswalt tweeted, “If they’ve really caught the #GoldenStateKiller I hope I get to visit him. Not to gloat or gawk — to ask him the questions that @TrueCrimeDiary wanted answered in her “Letter To An Old Man”

Over a 10-year-period — from 1976 to 1986 — the Golden State Killer was linked by DNA and method to hundreds of crimes from Sacramento to southern California’s Orange County. His victims ranged in age from 13 to 41 and included women at home alone or with their children or husbands.


The suspect currently in custody was in law enforcement and had been living Citrus Heights, a Sacramento suburb, a police source tells PEOPLE.

The source says the suspect was caught through “sophisticated” DNA analysis. According to the source, the suspect was not on the radar of police until recently.

“I hope you got him, Michelle,” Oswalt tweeted. “I hope THEY got him.”

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