Tuesday, October 16 , 2018, 6:30 am | Fair 48º


Santa Barbara Murder Suspect Appears in Court; Arraignment Postponed

A Santa Barbara man suspected of stabbing his girlfriend to death appeared in court Friday, but his arraignment hearing was continued until next week.

Aubrey Dupree Wadford, 39, was arrested on a murder charge early Wednesday morning, after a woman was found dead in an apartment on the 500 block of W. Los Olivos Street.

Officers responded at 1:40 a.m. to the location where a neighbor reported a disturbance coming from a nearby apartment, according to police.

They found the body of 39-year-old Angela Laskey in the home. 

Wadford and Laskey were not married, but have a 2-year-old daughter together. The child was placed in the custody of Child Welfare Services.

Police have said there had been a history of police calls to the Los Olivos Street address, but have not given more details.

On Friday, the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office announced that Wadford was being charged with one count of murder in Laskey's death, and is also being charged with a special allegation of personally using a deadly weapon, a knife, during the commission of the murder, the statement said.

The complaint filed by the District Attorney also states that they intend to introduce evidence of any prior acts of domestic violence committed by Wadford.

Laskey's mother arrived in Los Angeles Thursday night from Scotland, and was met at Los Angeles International Airport by Santa Barbara Police Department Detectives, according to Sgt. Riley Harwood.

"She has been put in contact with victim and child welfare advocates and arrangements are currently being made for her to take custody of her granddaughter," he said.

Wadford appeared in a blue jumpsuit Friday in Santa Barbara Superior Court and is being held in custody on $1 million bail.

Deputy Public Defender Jennifer Archer was representing Wadford on Friday, and requested that the judge deny multiple media requests to shoot photos in the courtroom.

Archer said that her client is African-American and didn't want to taint the jury pool.

"It's a small town and this is a big case," Archer told Judge William Gordon, who denied the photo and video requests, but will allow media to request access in the future.

After the hearing, Deputy District Attorney Von Nguyen said she could not provide any more information about the case or the history of police calls to the apartment.

The arraignment was continued until Tuesday.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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