NASHVILLE -- Before a suspect was caught in the four-decade-old East Area Rapist case, some of the victims and their loved ones spent years searching for answers about the the elusive criminal who derailed their lives.
This weekend, the "sister survivors," as they call themselves gathered at the Crime Con Convention where FOX40 was able to speak to them.
A group of East Area Rapist victims and their family members had already been planning to come to this convention in Nashville, Tennessee. Then they found out about an arrest in the case and everything changed.
When Debbi Domingo was a teenager in 1981, her reality was shattered. Her mother, Cheri Domingo and her mother's boyfriend Greg Sanchez, were murdered by a mysterious intruder.
Shortly after learning it was the work of the East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer, Domingo became persistent in her search for answers.
The search brought her to crime con last year. But this year was different.
"Within the past week we had to get to the printer and scramble and make sure we got the word 'captured' put across the flier," said Domingo.
The *search* has ended... with a suspect in custody.
"Unbelievable. It's been a miracle. DNA science has got this guy," said Domingo
Crime Con brought a whirlwind of emotion. Debbi Domingo was there with Michelle Cruz, the sister of Golden State Killer murder victim, Janelle Cruz.
Survivors, Jane Carson Sandler and Margaret Wardlow, were also at the convention along with, investigator Paul Holes.
At age 13, Margaret Wardlow was the East Area Rapist's youngest victim.
"I kinda had given up and I was OK with that and that was until about a year and a half ago. And that was until I met my sister survivors - as we call ourselves," said Wardlow.
Sister survivors who have been bravely sharing their darkest moments in hopes they would see an arrest of the East Area Rapist one day.
One of the victims, - Jane Carson Sandler, says now that a suspect has been identified and arrested, the survivors have the power now.