College Student Charged With Killing Parents Faces Death Penalty - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

College Student Charged With Killing Parents Faces Death Penalty

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Santa Ana, CA -

(FOX 11 / CNS) A 19-year-old college student indicted for allegedly murdering his parents and leaving his 8-year-old brother paralyzed in San Juan Capistrano is scheduled to be arraigned today.

Ashton Colby Sachs was charged in March with killing his parents and attempting to kill two of his siblings. But prosecutors took the case before a grand jury, which indicted the defendant on Monday on two counts of murder, with special circumstance allegations of multiple murders, and two counts of attempted murder with premeditation and deliberation.

He also faces sentence-enhancing allegations of personal use of a firearm causing death, personal use of a gun causing bodily injury and causing paralysis.

Sachs is eligible for the death penalty if convicted, and at a minimum would face life in prison without the possibility of parole. An indictment helps to legally fast-track a case since prosecutors no longer have to get to trial through a preliminary hearing.

Bradford Hans Sachs, 57, and his ex-wife, Andra Resa Sachs, 54, were found dead and their 8-year-old son wounded about 2 a.m. Feb. 9 inside their home in the 32000 block of Peppertree Bend.

Two daughters were in the residence, but they were unable to identify the killer the night of the shootings, according to Senior Deputy District Attorney Ebrahim Baytieh. One of the attempted murder counts involves Sachs' 17-year-old sister, who he allegedly fired on, but missed, Baytieh said.

The parents' business background complicated the investigation, according to Justin Montano, the primary detective on the case. The couple had extensive real estate holdings, and investigators early on looked into whether their deaths were related to their business dealings, he said.

Phone records, witness statements and other evidence ultimately pointed to the defendant, Baytieh said. The prosecutor alleged that Sachs appeared to have planned the ambush over a long period of time. The North Seattle Community College student purchased the alleged murder weapon, which investigators recovered, according to Baytieh.

The prosecutor previously said the defendant's parents had been "supportive" of their son. But Orange County Superior Court records pertaining to the couple's divorce in 2000 shed a little light about some of the rancor between the two that also involved their three biological children.

Their 8-year-old son and another daughter were adopted later.

Brad Sachs was arrested by Newport Beach police in March 2000 following a custody exchange of the couple's children Myles, Ashton and Alexis. Myles was 8 at the time, the defendant was 6, and Alexis was 3.

Andra Sachs requested a restraining order, alleging her then-estranged husband assaulted her as he was picking up the three children for visitation, according to court records. She alleged he opened a car door that slammed into her stomach before his vehicle collided with hers.

As Andra Sachs went to check on the children in her car, she alleged their father "came after me and threw me onto the pavement, where I hit my head and, for a brief moment, blacked out. I received injuries to my head, left thigh, knee and ankle."

Andra Sachs also alleged that her husband had introduced his girlfriend to the three children a week after he moved out. Their son, Myles, "told me that, `I saw Daddy sexing Sheri,"' Andra Sachs said in the restraining order declaration. "Myles has also told me he has seen Daddy and Sheri naked."

On March 28, 2000, a judge issued an order prohibiting the father's girlfriend from staying over during visitations with the children. Custody exchanges were to be done at a neutral location and the couple was ordered to enroll in parenting and anger management classes as well as participate in individual therapy, according to court records.

There are no other records of discord between the two in the divorce.

 

From Sandra Endo:

The motive is still unclear...

Why 20 year old Ashton Colby Sachs would allegedly shoot and kill his parents in their San Juan Capistrano home while they were sleeping and then attempt to kill his 8 year old brother and one of his teenaged sisters.

It happened on February 9th. investigators say the north Seattle community college student purchased a gun and drove to Orange County where he allegedly shot and killed his divorced parents.... 57 year old Bradford Sachs and 54 year old Andra Sachs.... who were still living together,

His 8 year old brother Landon was also shot and was left paralyzed. His 17 year old sister Alexis was also a target but wasn't hit. Two other siblings were inside the multi million home at the time of the shooting but were unharmed.

Nobody was arrested for a month until evidence pointed to Ashton Sachs.

He is charged with two counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder.

If convicted he could face life without parole.

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