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Unmasked: Crime Scenes, Cold Cases and My Hunt for the Golden State Killer

Paul Holes

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True crime

From the detective who helped catch the Golden State Killer, a memoir about investigating America's toughest cold cases, and the rewards - and toll - of a life spent solving crime.

For a decade, from 1973, The Golden State Killer stalked and murdered Californians in the dead of night, leaving entire communities afraid to turn off the lights. Then he vanished, and the case remained unsolved.

In 1994, when cold-case investigator Paul Holes came across the old file, he swore he would unmask GSK and finally give these families closure. Twenty-four years later, Holes fulfilled that promise, identifying 73-year-old Joseph J. DeAngelo. Headlines blasted around the world: one of America's most prolific serial killers had been caught.

That case launched Paul's career into the stratosphere, turning him into an icon in the true-crime world. But while many know the story of the capture of GSK, until now, no one has truly known the man behind it all.

In UNMASKED, Paul takes us through his memories of a storied career and provides an insider account of some of the most notorious cases in contemporary American history, including Laci Peterson's murder and Jaycee Dugard's kidnapping. But this is also a revelatory profile of a complex man and what makes him tick: the drive to find closure for victims and their loved ones; the inability to walk away from a challenge - even at the expense of his own happiness. This is a story about the gritty truth of crime solving when there are no 'case closed' headlines. It is the story of a man and his commitment to his cases, and to the people who might have otherwise been forgotten.

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Paul Holes

Paul Holes retired as a cold case investigator after spending over 27 years working for the Sheriff and District Attorney's Offices during his tenure in Contra Costa County, located in the Bay Area, California. Having experience in both forensic and investigative assignments, Paul throughout his career specialized in cold case and serial predator crimes, developing and applying investigative, behavioural and forensic expertise in notable cases such as Golden State Killer and Jaycee Dugard. Paul is frequently sought out by investigators to consult on the most complex and high profile cases.

As an FBI Task Force Officer while employed with the DA's Office, Paul teamed with FBI and Sacramento DA personnel to apply innovative technology that identified Joseph DeAngelo as the Golden State Killer, the most prolific serial predator in US history.

Since the arrest of DeAngelo, Paul has been very involved on the media side continuing to assist law enforcement and victims' families with their unsolved cases, through the television shows The DNA of Murder with Paul Holes and America's Most Wanted, and with the podcast Jensen & Holes: The Murder Squad.

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