PLACERVILLE (CBS13) — The arrest of Joseph DeAngelo as the suspected East Area Rapist is giving new hope to a family seeking closure after their own tragedy.
Placerville mother Phyllis Ann Blasy was murdered in 1978. The case remains unsolved.
“I know nothing is going to bring her back but if I could know who killed my mother that would be amazing closure for my family,” Sean Blasy said.
Now 47 years old, he was just 7 when he found his mother’s body inside their Placerville family home.
“It was traumatizing,” Blasy said. “I lost my mother.”
Old family photos show the mother he remembers as strong.
“And that blue outfit right there, she was buried in that outfit,” Blasy said. “That was her favorite outfit.”
Someone shot Phyllis Ann Blasy with a .22 caliber handgun three times and left her dead.
“It’s just been a complete mystery,” Sean Blasy said.
The unsolved case has tormented her family.
When the Sacramento district attorney announced the arrest of Joseph DeAngelo as the suspected East Area Rapist, Blasy couldn’t help but compare his mom’s case to the EAR’s MO.
“My blood went cold at that minute and I went, ‘oh my god,’ this has real possibilities right here,” Blasy said.
Blasy says his mother’s murder in Placerville was close to the EAR’s other crimes.
“Why would he not travel up Highway 50 just 20 miles to this rural town and kill somebody there,” Blasy said.
And like the east area rapist, whoever killed his mother also stole unusual family mementos. A historic rifle, a necklace, and coins. He left far more valuable items behind.
“He was taking weird things,” Blasy said.
Blasy says investigators may rule out the East Area Rapist as his mother’s killer, but any new clues that come from a new look at her case will help him move closer to the answer he’s wanted for four decades.
“It’s very confusing when you’re 7, it’s confusing when you’re 47, I don’t know why somebody killed my mom,” Blasy said.
A Sacramento Sheriff Department spokesperson says so far they have found no link between the cases.
Blasy is meeting with El Dorado County Sheriff investigators next week, to look at the cold case files.