The Phantom Strikes Again?

It had been a spread of 31 years. The details are fuzzy. The connecting threads thin. But there hasn’t been too many of these type of serials. There’s been the Phantom of Texarkana, the Zodiac, and one other of note. . . . and it is of this one that we have little information. Not to minimize the tragedy, but the Atlanta lovers’ lane serial killer seemed a lackluster serial. He struck over a period of a few months beginning January 16, 1977, around the Adams and West Manor Park areas of Atlanta, Georgia. He crouched next to the cooing victims’ car and fired 6 wadcutters through the window. His first two victims died. His second pair of victims were both wounded. Of his third pair of victims, one survived and one died. He struck between intervals of 28 days on the middle weekend of the months January, February, and March 1977. Then there was no more.

Publicly, all that we know is that a black guy approached and tried to get into the second pair of victims’ car first. They saw him approach, saw him reach for the handle, but the doors were locked and wouldn’t open. He backed up, knelt down and started shooting from the same position as the other victims were and would be shot from.

We have little more than that. Age, we don’t know. Height, weight, all nada.

Back then, due to the psychology of the times, police did not believe that serials continued on or even returned to their crime sprees. But time and some bad experiences have proven that many serials stop, and in one case later tried to recapture the thrill decades later– the case of BTK.

Therefore there is little information if the Atlanta PD checked back to the crimes of the Phantom of Texarkana, Texas. He struck on weekends beginning in February 1946, and continued on weekends in March, April, and May. Then he was gone. A similar murder was committed later in south Florida on October 8, 1946, but this was on a Tuesday. The Fort Lauderdale police did check with Texarkana police in this case.

In neither crime sprees did the victims see much. Only the first two victims of the Phantom survived in Texarkana. They differed as to their attacker’s description. He wore a grain bag over his head, but they saw his hands. The male victim said he believed the attacker was a tanned white guy. The female victim believed the attacker was a light skinned black man. That’s all we have.

Over 40 years have passed since the Atlanta Lovers’ Lane Murders. It is time Atlanta PD released as much information as they have on the cases so that this tragic series of crimes can finally have the light of day they deserve, perhaps the light that can finally lead to the solution.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.


Unloathed Villains. . .

“Unsung” didn’t seem appropriate for the subjects of this blog post, so I think “unloathed” can take its place. These are the villains of gross crimes that we have forgotten about. For whatever reason the crimes never remained within the public consciousness. Either there wasn’t enough evidence to confirm a serial killer was responsible, or, sadly, the MO was so common that the details of the murders weren’t really that newsworthy.

Let’s have a look at what awaits us in the cold case files.

Home invasion strangulation.

Surprisingly, there are more of these than you might imagine. And they are spread out over the whole country. But there are some occurring in California that may be the result of a traveling serial killer. Some killers do travel extensively. The victim is a woman home alone, of course. There is evidence of some thievery, not much, or none at all. Rape may have happened first. The home invasion murders which have never been connected can be divided between strangulation and bludgeoning. Of the two the former has the best chance to be solved. If the evidence was maintained, then touch DNA can possibly be retrieved. Otherwise it is the old bulldog method of the ferret cells.

Strangulation is a cool, that is not heated, way to knock off a victim. Close contact– prolonged, tactile. It is a particularly vicious way to murder. There is a chance to catch these creeps. A number of murders from the 1980s have caught my attention and I will begin to introduce them in following blog posts.


There is the ubiquitous method of disposal– dumping a body in the woods or off a rural roadside in the boonies. A variation of this method should attract our attention.  There are a number of cases of young girls whose bodies were found dumped off rural roads . . . but the uniqueness here involved forensic evidence indicating they had been poisoned first.  The first happening of this in California was actually a facet of the Sonoma Coed Murders in the early 1970s. But there was evidence in that horrid case that two killers were simultaneously afoot with no connection to each other. The poisoned girls were much younger and did not show the telltale signs of the actual Coed Killer (bondage fetishes). In the late 1970s this unique MO moved south to the San Diego area.

There is a lot from the late 1970s and 1980s in San Diego that has captured my attention, and some of it may winnow down to a single serial remarkably similar to the East Area Rapist.

The Case of the Statewide Stalker

For a while I grew up in El Cajon and Bonita– I learned to drive down in SD in the decadent ’80s. I know the areas firsthand and I know the era. San Diego was a party town. It was affluent– the capital per capita in the 1980s of BMW, Mercedes, and Ferraris. San Diego is the center for all the suburbs. Even radio stations based in the suburbs will announce themselves as El Cajon, San Diego (or Chula Vista, National City, take your pick) rather than El Cajon or La Mesa, California. It was a city that coveted its reputation as “America’s finest city.” The news didn’t like to disturb that image. The idea of the Satan Crescent coming down from the LA area to Fallbrook was not mentioned. Few knew that San Diego PD had an “occult squad” for investigating church ransackings, road kills, and reports of occult powwows in houses.

Behind-the-scenes of the idyllic there was much mystery and tragedy.

As my series of posts on the potential of “2 EARs” has indicated, there is most likely the existence of another perp whose MO was starkly similar to the one used by the accused J.J. DeAngelo. You might call him the hairier EAR. The evidence was so clear that it naturally inspired confusing theories about accomplices, etc, but these seldom became public. Those behind-the-scenes like me kept quiet and sought another perp. He was only a probability. The Original Night Stalker clouded his image and he in turn hampered all those trying to identify the ONS.

The great interest that the EAR/ONS case created allowed the release of much information on suspect sketches and home invasion attempts. Within this massive dossier it became apparent, just from location, POI sketches, and eventually the details in murders, that there was another home invader who hit corner houses. With the arrest of DeAngelo, we are left with the residue of this evidence, and this helps hone the appearance of this other “unloathed” villain– the Statewide Stalker.

This creep I now pursue, now free of the confusing bits of clues and evidence which the Original Night Stalker’s crime spree added to the mix. There is consistency in MO and even appearances some times. The first part of the chase is the hardest– establishing that these crimes can be connected.

There is only one thing harder than solving a serial killing and that is to prove there is a serial killer afoot, especially hard 40 years after-the-fact, and when the MO was not starkly unique.

“He” broke into corner houses, stalked, no doubt raped, and turned to murder in the 1980s as well. If he struck in other states I do not know yet. I place “he” in quotes not because I think it might have been a woman but because as it stands there is no concrete proof all the crimes were done by a single serial. I will be introducing the cases here and on Q Files and note what may link them together.

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Death of Cold Cases?

Now the alleged NorCal Rapist has been arrested. Personally, for me, a lot is off my plate. I wanted to give this villain the publicity he deserved but, alas, it was not to be. Hopefully, he will get the sentence he deserves and not see the light of day again. There was never much out there in the public about him. True crime buffs openly pondered why I was the only one talking about him. Well, he had flown under radar his whole crime career. Even now the news articles are sketchy and reporting the factoid inaccuracy of his crime spree. He didn’t call to apologize to the Halloween victim. He called to be smug, as always, in his theatrical way.

In any case, to the point. Are we witnessing the death of cold cases? The answer is yes– for crimes that are associated with DNA anyway. This means rape will not be a cold case anymore . . .for the most part.

Detectives take great pride in having unraveled a serial crime spree through the gray cell method– the deductive and inductive logic that tests and pits their intellect against the villain they are hunting. And well they should take pride in this. Tracking a creep by snooping into his cousin’s pedigree isn’t exactly the same thing, and some fear in a decade or so, after the genealogy method has long become the norm, the true bloodhound detective will be a thing of the past– retired or simply the art falls from lack of practice.

Potentially this is a dangerous thing. Unveiling the identity of a villain through genealogical tracing is dependent on that villain having a close enough relative in the database. For someone adopted, genealogical database searching could lead to nothing but deadends.

There are also crimes that don’t involve DNA– the ultimate is, of course, one of them: murder. Serial killers don’t have to come in close. Had The Zodiac Killer not mailed letters to brag of his crimes, there would be no chance at DNA. The Zodiac’s MO wasn’t unique. The Phantom of Texarkana (1946), The Atlanta Serial Killer (1977) just approached the petting couples and started blasting. Son of Sam did it the same way. The Colonial Parkway killer was a little more involved, but essentially he was a lovers’ lane killer, and circumstances have boiled DNA down to touch DNA from the cars, as I understand it. There are other suspected serials that are known as Highway Killers, who simply started shooting their victims. True crime followers know the cases. They are named after the highway upon which they struck.  I don’t know if there is DNA from the Long Island Serial Killer, but the lack of it is helped here by his disposal method.

This is another problem. Some serials dispose of their victims in certain ways that get rid of the DNA. As news of genealogical tracing becomes more common in cracking cases, serials will begin to cover themselves better.

Like the NorCal Rapist case, there’s a lot of cases out there people haven’t heard about. So there is most definitely the need for gray cells to put them together and then track the villains responsible. Some of them are old and there is no DNA.

The Doodler Case may be one of them. I don’t know what was preserved in the case of the Monster of Florence. The Killing Fields of Texas is a good example of how hard it is to sometimes identify a single serial killer in action. Jurisdictions responsible for these old cases should seriously consider putting as much information up as possible in the public so that these villains can be hunted by society on the whole and finally brought to justice.

Decades ago some villains showed brilliance at avoiding leaving clues. Mr Cruel was one of them. Sadly, there are more still out there. 

One desires the death of cold and hot cases. But genealogy isn’t the smoking gun. We’re going to have a rash of solutions and then triumph will fall silent. Not all villains will be traceable. New ones will arise who use an MO conditioned to protect themselves more. The snoop dog detective should still be a prized commodity to any law enforcement body.

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

NorCal Rapist– a real life SCREAM Villain

I have given a few updates on Twitter or Facebook regarding my hunt for NorCal Rapist. There is only a general introduction page up on Quester Files. I’ve withheld a lot of information for a number of reasons. A lot of my investigation so far has been trying to establish NorCal’s attacks and get him the notoriety he deserves. He will now today start getting that attention, as Sacramento PD holds a press conference.

Major Development To Be Announced In ‘NorCal Rapist’ Case

Part of the reason I haven’t said much is that most of my investigation has been trying to uncover his crimes rather than write about them. Martinez was sure it wasn’t their case.  Rohnert Park lists the case as active still, but I haven’t checked with the DA’s office whether the complaint was filed against the perp’s DNA. Whether yeah (unlikely) I really didn’t care. I figured a local cop just might want to remain on the guy’s trail even if it is out of SOL now. More power to him! Rohnert Park, I suppose, might now also attempt what other counties have done with EAR-ONS and file a kidnapping charge against NorCal since, by my understanding, he took the victim by surprise on her couch downstairs and led her upstairs to her bedroom at gun point.  I haven’t tried to contact Woodland because not even the year is in the public forum and the other jurisdictions I asked (if they had shared info) haven’t responded.

But it is time to start sharing some details. NorCal laid down a couple of patterns and there needs to be some deduction and indication based on them.

One pattern:

This is seen clearly in Rohnert Park, Davis Strike 1 and Sacramento 2006.

The dates:

Rohnert Park– June 23, 1991 (Sunday morning)

Davis Strike 1– January 25, 1997– (Saturday morning)

Sacramento– October 13, 2006 (Friday night)

In just these 3 strikes we see the neighborhoods are largely identical. Rohnert Park’s attack occurred  at the 1300 block Parkway Drive. Davis Strike 1 in the Wildhorse area most likely. Sacramento on Ivycrest.


The location of strike 1, Rohnert Park, Sunday morning June 23, 1991. A newer community in the fields. 


Davis 1 Strike January 25, 1997. The bank is marked with B. The appendix off East Covell is the Wild Horse area, a new development surrounded by fields. This Google is from 2003, the closest to 1997 overhead I could get. 


North Natomas area marked, as it looked in 2005. The attack was October 13, 2006. Last known attack. It is a little appendix in the fields. 

As you can see, the three communities were new, under construction and accessed from a main thoroughfare that avoided any downtown congestion.  This is particularly noticeable in Davis 1 Strike. E. Covell’s extends between Highway 110 and 80.  The communities formed little appendices off this main road. For Natomas, it is a direct route from Del Paso Road to Highway 5.

For Davis Strike 1 I finally got tired of lack of responses and got off my honches and looked at the released ATM camera footage of NorCal and from the shades of background in the parking lot I was able to identify the bank as a credit union on East Covell.  This makes it highly likely he struck nearby, and the Wild Horse area follows his pattern, as much as can so far be determined.

Each strike above was on the weekend– Friday night, Saturday and Sunday morning. All strikes but Halloween 1996 were on a weekend.  Woodland and Vallejo unknown. Vallejo says they purged records. 1-97

The Friday night attack (October 13, 2006) was before midnight. The others were in the early morning hours. The Davis 1 strike must have been fairly early since the ATM records the time on the screen. Parkway Drive attack (Rohnert Park) was Sunday morning, though I’ve heard that the victim fell asleep on the couch Saturday night the 22nd, so it is likely that it was very early Sunday morning when NorCal entered and put the cold steel of the gun muzzle.

Rohnert Park’s condos are close to a university. Chico’s occurred at 115 West Sacramento Avenue in the Paradise Apartments. This is across from Chico State. The apartments are occupied by young students. The victim here was 21 years old.


Chico’s strike is furthest from the highway, though it is right off Nord Avenue, which in turn is right off 32, a main road from Highway 101. The attack occurred at 4 a.m. July 18, 1997. This is Friday morning, so the NorCal was prepared Thursday night. 

The Martinez attack was Thursday night, Halloween, 1996– time unknown, street name unknown. The actual type of skeleton mask he wore still unknown. Vallejo’s attack was in February 1992– date and time unknown, street name unknown. Woodland’s attack– unknown, unknown, unknown. Davis 1 and 2 dates are known (January 25, 1997, Saturday, July 16, 2000, Sunday)– times, street names unknown.

After the press conference, hopefully there is complete information to finally start tracking him. I’m hoping for a phenotype.

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.



Fearsome Faces– Hunting NorCal Rapist

We have to start by going back, going back to the tail end of the age of excess. The Decadent ’80s attitudes spilled over into the 1990s, making it yet another Naughty Nineties of excess and post Yuppie decadence. Halloween had become the big holiday now. It passed in excess of spending even Christmas. Newswires carried the stories, surprising people that more Americans actually spent the most money at Halloween.  It was an era of partying, self indulgence and, well, excess.

And Halloween is the perfect party night!  It is America’s last national festival in which the community is the stage. For 4th of July we crowd the parks and watch the parades and blow off fireworks out front of back our homes. Thanksgiving is a quiet time of feasting in our homes. Easter a somber time of repentance. There are parades and bar frivolity for St. Paddy’s– you get my point.  Halloween the neighborhood, the basic American neighborhood is the setting and everybody is included. It is a raucous national festival you cannot avoid. You may bury yourself in your house if you don’t like it– but you can still hear it outside. The groups of kids shuffle past, screaming, squawking, boasting, oohing and awing over some scare fest they just experienced. It is the way. It is Halloween. Europe my have many white nights and festival days in which the old cobblestone streets are jammed with merriment, but American has only Halloween remaining as a national festival. Halloween

Capitalizing upon and warping the exuberant era was one villain in particular. He was a home invasion rapist who carefully stalked his intended victims beforehand and then carefully working out his mode of attack before he appeared at their house or in it late one night or early morning and started his long, dramatic performance.

This is NorCal Rapist– yet another home invasion sadist and sexual terrorist. He is someone I have dedicated myself now to outing.  . . .or contributing thereto. It is difficult, as I have written before. Before he can be identified his crimes have to be put forward in order so that all can appreciate his evil and assist in any way in identifying him.

Much so far is lost– even the dates of a few of his crimes. For Woodland, even the year is lost. Vallejo has purged records (so far as is known) and a couple of jurisdictions refuse even the basics of information that always appear in newspaper stories.

But progress is still being made in the establishing the basics– dates, times, years. Recently, I’ve been able to establish the location of the bank where NorCal drained his first Davis (California) victim’s account while wearing that gaudy Mardi Gras mask. It is on East Cowell, making it likely that NorCal struck on January 25, 1997, in the Wild Horse area of Davis.

Showing all who would see this that he was wearing a jubilant mask– the taunting night stalker. 

Determining this helps in general with geoprofiling. But more details are necessary–specifically, the words he said to his victims, how he acted about the house, what things he might have stolen.

There should be no question this guy enjoyed his performances. It was with his Halloween 1996 attack in Martinez, California, that he first used a dramatic mask– possibly the Fearsome Faces skull face mask. He popped up at the victim’s house wearing this and gave himself his treat and payed on her his trick. Fearsome Faces are the manufacturers of Ghostface as well, and in that same year that mask would achieve lasting cultural status when used in Scream, which came out two months after his Halloween attack. Here this villain did likewise, taking his victims by surprise in his ghastly black cloak and wearing that distorted mask.

Such was NorCal, the taunting, theatrical sadist and rapist. ScreamII

He took his act on the road, traveling about northern California and doing the same thing to other unsuspecting women at home.

Soon thereafter he used the perverse smiling mask in Davis and made sure we all knew it be wearing it as he stepped up to the ATM to be photographed. On July 18, 1997, he struck in Chico, another college town, and there the victim saw him to his face. I have no recollection of a mask having been worn, so he may have taken it off while he rummaged about the victims single bedroom Paradise Apartments.

But the drama didn’t stop. He theatrically told her not to look at him, the implication was that he’d have to kill her for seeing his face. But she jabbed him with the scissors and scarred his left forearm. He eventually left without raping her like the others.

Chico sketch
Chico PD sketch

Something else hadn’t changed. NorCal struck only on weekends– from Friday to Sunday morning. Halloween 1996 was the only exception. It was a Thursday night.

But how dramatic was he at the other strikes? That remains to be seen. Much more data must be gathered to even identify Vallejo’s and Martinez’s attack points, and those in Davis. It would be a miracle to locate Woodland’s (but then miracles happen).

However, it is clear from the pattern so far that NorCal stuck to communities close to a main thoroughfare. East Cowell in Davis fits with the pattern in Rohnert Park, Sacramento, Chico. No doubt also in Vallejo, Woodland, and Martinez and in the July 16, 2000 attack in Davis.

Pattern is what we need. It is essential to reenact each of his footsteps so we can track him. He identified his victims somehow, stalked them, and got to their houses. And uncovering the locations will finally place us in a position to pick up his scent.

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

The Hunt for NORCAL Rapist– Step by Step

It was my desire to upload the NorCal Rapist section of Quester Files all at once, at the end of my initial investigation. However, I will have to do so incrementally as information unfolds.

From phone calls, emails, snail mail, I have been able to deduce that nobody has officially worked the case for over a decade. More than one person at Martinez Police, though polite, were adamant that the Halloween case 1996 was not their case. They had never heard of it. I sohuld contact the sheriffs. Soon, however, I got a call back confirming they had found the case file in their records. They refused to confirm, even the basics that are usually contained in newspaper accounts or on America’s Most Wanted.  The Martinez Gazette could find nothing, and I still need to wade through the archives of the Vallejo Times Herald to see if they did an article on it in 1996.

Of course, the basics of the street name, time, date, are standard items in the newspapers for when a crime is committed, and that is all that was requested. Newspaper accounts have related the street name in Chico, plus the time of the attack there in July 1997, but the date was absent and I still wait on that date to be confirmed. News reported on the Sacramento and Rohnert Park cases as well, so there is enough information to begin there.

I must also check to see if Vallejo Times Herald did an article on the February 1992 strike in Vallejo. According to Police Records, everything from that era was purged.

I also requested the case numbers so that I could check with the District Attorney’s Office about which cases were still active. After my site goes up, I need to forward any information that comes in to the jurisdiction that can still legally prosecute.  Some refused to give the case number though it is only a reference number which the DA’s Office would need to check if the complaint was filed with them.


Solano County DA’s office was skeptical that DNA was filed against in the Vallejo case. I could not check with Contra Costa County since Martinez Police would not qualify anything, but I would suspect that the DNA was filed against.  Davis refused to give the case numbers, so it is impossible to check with the DA in Yolo County. Sacramento filed against the DNA, so I am told, but (when I called) the man on the phone never heard of the case and suggested I email the DA office’s general email, which allows anybody there to answer. None did.

Geoprofiling will begin with those cases where enough information exists. Those that will be first are Rohnert Park. News cameras went out with the victim and it was easy to identify the condo complex as the 1300 block of Parkway Drive. Chico will be next– it occurred on West Sacramento Ave. Sacramento’s strike occurred on Ivycrest– it was reported in the news at the time and TV news cameras followed the events so that it is easy to identify the actual house. I do not identify homes publicly, so that information will be withheld.

Circumstances can always be qualified, but the privacy of the individual cannot be compromised. Anything of such a nature that compromises the identity of the victim I do not share.

I will be working press contacts, etc, to get enough information to put this case on the radar where it belongs.  As the cases go up and gain notoriety more information will hopefully come in that will allow the dossier on this villain to be completed.

Please see previous posts on NorCal Rapist to get an idea of what this home invasion rapist and terrorist was like.

Vital information includes the street name of the attack, confirmation of the dates for Chico, Woodland, and Vallejo, and for Davis the street where the bank was located where NorCal was photo’d by the ATM camera when he drained the victim’s account on January 25, 1997.

A decade ago there was once a Myspace page on the crimes which has vanished. The information came from several of the victims. Hopefully, some of that information can eventually be found.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

The True Mindset of NorCal Rapist

From my last major blog on NorCal Rapist the reader no doubt got the impression I dislike the “psychological profile” that has been asserted about him– namely that he deluded himself into believing that his home invasion rapes were consensual. This psycho profile has been asserted only once, so it is not something dominant, but sadly this one time is the only time there has been any kind of in depth review of this lost case.

I dislike this profile because it is false. But more than this it is a certain type of falsehood that creates a very dangerous effect– it minimizes NorCal’s evil.

Fortunately such psycho profiles are fading, put in place in an era in which metaphor was still heavily being used by psychiatry as a base off which to theorize. A particularly horrid example is the metaphor of the bed. In the 1950s it was a metaphor for “mother.” So when a kid wet his bed he was subconsciously saying he hates momma. Yet later it was discovered that when certain allergens were taken away from the child, the bed wetting stopped. The rather obvious deduction was made: bed wetting was the result of the “sneezing” of an allergic bladder.

But before such strides were made in medicine, can you imagine how many children and how many mothers were given a guilt trip over the event of bed wetting?

In 2005, Dr. Richard McNally (Harvard) and Dr. Grant Devilly (Duke), testified before the supreme court in order to bring it up to date on the recent outlooks within the business of psychology. McNally declared of “repressed memory” that is did not exist. It was the biggest “bit of folklore to ever infect psychology and psychiatry.”

Yet for 100 years psychologists believed that people could forget (repress) traumatic experiences. Though individually none had ever treated a case of it, collectively they must have believed that it was always some other shrink that had the cases. When the data was finally collated, it was discovered no psychologist ever had a case. On the contrary, real studies showed that victims of traumatic experiences wanted to forget them but couldn’t (not surprisingly).

These are just two examples where past theories that had been used to interpret real life events had crumbled to actual data collation and logic.

Even with the minimal amount that is known about NorCal rapist’s dialog with his victims, and what can be deduced (so far) about his modus operandi of selecting them, it is clear he knew well that he was breaking and entering, terrorizing and raping his victims against their will. His sarcastic little tauntings make it plain, just as his image in the ATM camera testifies to his intent.

While draining one victim’s account in 1997 (using her ATM card), he put back in place the smiling Mardi Gras mask to conceal his features. He turned this way and that to reveal he had a mask on and had outguessed those who would see this film and try and follow him.


NorCal knew well that he stalked, bound and gagged, terrorized, raped, and robbed his victims . . . and he enjoyed it for those reasons. He took the necessary precautions to avoid being followed. With his last victims he took them into the shower and tried to wash them clean.

Either the Martinez victim or the idea of attacking on Halloween excited him enough that he broke his pattern and struck on a weekday night. Here he wore a plastic skull mask. This bit of drama began a new pattern in him. At the next victim he would wear the jubilating Mardi Gras mask.  It fit with the theatricality he had displayed, it blended better in the early morning at the ATM while he robbed the victim.

Two months after his Halloween 1996 strike the movie Scream would premiere. It would feature a similar MO– someone lurking outside the house, peeping in the windows and mysteriously appearing inside dressed in a Halloween costume and ghost mask. This perhaps helps you envision him in action . . .except in real life.  A month later at the end of January 1997 he would wear the smiling Mardi Gras mask and strike in Davis, California.  This was the closest together of all of his attacks– Martinez, Davis. He was on a roll now. In July he would strike in far away Chico, another college town like Davis.

Something had clearly changed in him after his first taste of theatricality. His first victim had been in June 1991, the second in February 1992 (at which he wore nothing more dramatic than a ski mask). Martinez was his third, Davis a few months later his fourth, Chico his fifth . . . but the roll stopped here.

(The year of his aborted Woodland strike has been lost; still searching for it.)

He then vanished again until 2000 and returned to Davis. Did he have victims in the interim? I don’t know. He threatened his victims at the end that if they went to the police there would be trouble. He reminded them that he knew what they looked like. They didn’t know what he looked like. Some may have been cowed from going to the authorities. But his threat above, confirmed by Victim 1, makes it plain he knew this wasn’t consensual.

NorCal was a premeditative, cautious, and self indulgent rapist. The home invasion serials are the most careful, cleverest, and hardest to  find. It’s time to get much more information out there of this performing, taunting rapist.

*         *        *

Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.