LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A jury discovered a person nicknamed the “Hollywood Ripper” responsible on Thursday of knifing to demise two girls, together with actor Ashton Kutcher’s date, and trying to homicide a 3rd sufferer throughout a seven-year span.
Michael Gargiulo, a 43-year-old former handyman and aspiring actor, sat impassively, leaning ahead barely in his chair, because the jury verdict was learn.
The Los Angeles County Superior Courtroom panel will subsequent take into account whether or not Gargiulo was sane on the time of the crimes, in proceedings to start on Tuesday.
Kutcher, the previous star of TV reveals “Two and a Half Males” and “That ‘70s Present” informed the Los Angeles jury listening to the case in Could he arrived on the Hollywood bungalow of one of many victims in 2001, after arranging a date along with her, and located the lights on and the door locked.
Peering by means of a window within the dwelling of the sufferer, trend pupil Ashley Ellerin, the then 23-year-old Kutcher noticed “what I believed was a pink wine spilled on the carpet.”
Kutcher left and Ellerin, 22, was discovered useless at her dwelling the following morning by a roommate. Gargiulo had damaged into her place and repeatedly stabbed her, prosecutors stated.
Ellerin was one of many girls Gargiulo was convicted of murdering. The jury additionally discovered him responsible of utilizing a knife to kill his neighbor, Maria Bruno, in 2005.
Bruno, who was 32 and sleeping when she was attacked, lived in the identical residence advanced as Gargiulo in suburban El Monte, the Los Angeles District Legal professional’s Workplace stated in a press release.
The jury discovered Gargiulo responsible of trying to homicide a 3rd girl, Michelle Murphy, who survived a 2008 stabbing at her dwelling within the coastal Los Angeles suburb of Santa Monica.
On the time, Murphy and Gargiulo had been neighbors.
He attacked the then 26-year-old Murphy however she fought him off. Within the battle, Gargiulo was reduce and left behind DNA proof, which police investigators used to tie him to the murders of Ellerin and Bruno, prosecutors stated.
Gargiulo’s attorneys have argued their consumer suffered from a psychological dysfunction that left him in a complicated “fugue state” when he attacked Murphy, the Los Angeles Occasions reported.
Gargiulo has denied committing the opposite slayings, the newspaper reported.
Jurors on Thursday discovered him responsible of making an attempt to flee from jail following his 2008 arrest. Prosecutors plan to hunt the demise penalty at a later stage of the trial.
They’ve stated Gargiulo started his sequence of lethal knifings as an adolescent within the Chicago space in 1993, when he killed an 18-year-old girl.
Gargiulo is predicted to later be extradited to his dwelling state of Illinois to face costs in that killing.
Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis; Enhancing by Invoice Tarrant, Alistair Bell and Lisa Shumaker