In the News

Michaela Garecht disappearance: Speed Freak Killers information allegedly withheld by sheriff's office

March 10, 2015

A state senator, detectives and parents of missing children -- including the mother of missing Hayward 9-year-old Michaela Garecht -- lambasted the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office on Monday amid allegations that the Central Valley department destroyed missing persons records and stonewalled other police agencies during its investigation of the infamous "Speed Freak Killers" case.

San Joaquin County authorities accused of impeding investigation into Michaela Garecht case

March 10, 2015

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTVU) -- When State Senator Cathleen Galgiani filed a federal court motion to unseal missing persons records and accused the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office of deleting files related to the so-called "Speed Freak Killers," she wasn't the only person questioning the Sheriff's handling of the case.

Declarations by investigators from two other agencies also describe meeting resistance from San Joaquin County.

Families of "Speed Freak Killers" victims demand answers

March 10, 2015

A convicted serial killer on California's death row says he can show law enforcement where to find more victims. He may have been involved in as many as 70 murders in California, Nevada and Utah, but families of the missing say they're not getting help from the one place they expect it -- the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Department, reports CBS News correspondent Ben Tracy.

"What's in it for you not to bring these people home? For most of us, it's been decades. We're ready," Marie Gillit said.

Missing Person Files Go Missing in San Joaquin Sheriffs

March 10, 2015

The San Joaquin Sheriff's Department was accused of deleting or canceling missing person files for at least five cases. The cases have possible connections to the Speed Freak Killers, Wesley Shermantine and Loren Herzog. Shermantine and Herzog were convicted of four murders, but are believed to be responsible for many more.

Marie Gillit said her father, Phillip Cabot Martin used to work construction with Shermantine.

"He is not a man that would abandon his children," she said.

State Sen. Cathleen Galgiani: ‘Speed Freak Killers’ records deleted

March 10, 2015

A Sacramento lawmaker is calling out the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office for allegedly mishandling missing persons records.

Attorney Mark Geragos filed a motion in U.S. Federal Court March 9 on behalf of California Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, D-Stockton, to allow her access to sealed documents regarding the removal of several missing persons records in the “Speed Freak Killers” case.

Sen. Cathleen Galgiani announces missing persons committee

February 19, 2015

Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, D-Sacramento, has been appointed chair of the newly created Senate Select Committee on Missing and Unidentified Persons.

“My interest in missing persons cases began back in the Assembly, when my constituents were threatened with the potential release of Loren Herzog, one-half of the Speed Freak Killers,” Galgiani said.

Galgiani pegged to head missing person committee

February 19, 2015

SACRAMENTO — Involvement in a missing-person case that had San Joaquin County riveted two years ago has led to a key appointment for State Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, who announced Wednesday she has been appointed chair of the newly created Senate Select Committee on Missing and Unidentified Persons.


Two years ago, a very public search for human remains in an abandoned well in Linden put a spotlight on San Joaquin County and two boyhood friends who had gone on a drug-fueled killing spree years before.