NorCal Rapist suspect faces 28 new charges in Sacramento court

Prosecutors in Sacramento filed 28 new charges against NorCal Rapist suspect Roy Charles Waller Monday, wrapping in allegations from a total of seven victims in six Northern California counties.

In a brief hearing before Sacramento Superior Court Judge Gary Ransom, Waller appeared only long enough for prosecutors to announce the new filing and for Ransom to deny a defense request to bar media from covering hearings in the case.

Waller was ordered to return to court for the next hearing March 8.

Waller, whose 59th birthday is Tuesday, is accused of being the notorious NorCal Rapist, a man who authorities say targeted victims in various northern California communities from 1991 through 2006.

The suspect is accused of at least 11 sexual assaults during that time period, and originally faced a dozen felony counts related to an October 2006 attack in North Natomas, during which two female roommates were tied up and assaulted repeatedly during a six-hour ordeal.

The NorCal Rapist attacks are believed to have occurred in Sacramento and five other counties — Sonoma, Solano, Contra Costa, Yolo and Butte — and the new charges filed Monday cover attacks in the other counties and bring the total counts he now faces to 40.

The new charges stem from DNA evidence and signal that prosecutors in all six counties plan to consolidate the case for trial in Sacramento.

Prosecutors are continuing to evaluate other possible charges in addition to the 28 counts filed Monday, Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Chris Ore said following the hearing.

Waller, who faces up to life in prison if convicted, is being held without bail in the Sacramento County Jail.

Waller was a safety specialist at UC Berkeley who was arrested on campus in September after officials at the Sacramento County District Attorney’s crime lab tied DNA samples from the attacks to Waller.

District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert has said Waller was targeted using the same technique that led authorities to arrest the Golden State Killer/East Area Rapist suspect, Joseph James DeAngelo, in April in Citrus Heights.

In both cases, authorities entered DNA from the attacks into the GEDmatch genealogy website and found close matches, then built family trees from the matches to lead them to their suspects.

Court records say police kept Waller under surveillance at his Benicia home and recovered a drinking straw from his garbage that produced DNA matching that found at the NorCal Rapist crime scenes.

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Sam Stanton has worked for The Bee since 1991 and has covered a variety of issues, including politics, criminal justice and breaking news.
Darrell Smith covers courts and California news for The Sacramento Bee. He joined The Bee in 2006 and previously worked at newspapers in Palm Springs, Colorado Springs, Colo., and Marysville. A Sacramento Valley native, Smith was born and raised at Beale Air Force Base, near Marysville.