The Atlantic

How a Genealogy Website Led to the Alleged Golden State Killer

Powerful tools are now available to anyone who wants to look for a DNA match, which has troubling privacy implications.
Source: Fred Greaves

Updated on April 27 12:45 p.m. ET.

When the East Area Rapist broke into the home of his first victim in 1976, human DNA had not yet been sequenced. When he reemerged as the Original Night Stalker and began a spree of murders in 1979, the World Wide Web still did not exist. For decades, the Golden State Killer—as he is now best known—got away with it all.

Then DNA and the internet appear to have caught up. Reporting from and indicates that police arrested Joseph James DeAngelo based on DNA found at crime scenes that partially matched the DNA of a relative on the open-source genealogy website . Previous searches of law-enforcement

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