Records: Calif. murder suspect had govt. distrust

By JASON DEAREN and SCOTT SONNER | May 22, 2011 | 4:44 PM EDT

RENO, Nev. (AP) — When a California judge holds a plea hearing this week for Joseph Naso, the 77-year-old photographer will likely be in court on his own, a rarity in a case like this one, which could bring the death penalty.

But for Naso, charged in the killings of four Northern California women — all of whom had the same first and last initials — going it alone against the government strikes a familiar theme.

Court records offer hints of his distrust of authorities and show how he has spent years fighting on his own over custody of his mentally disabled son.

Those records, along with interviews with former neighbors and acquaintances, also reveal Naso as a father who struggled to care for his mentally disabled son, battling officials at every turn.