Wednesday, February 21 , 2018, 4:11 am | Fair 42º


Local News

Santa Barbara Man Pleads Guilty to 2014 Murder of Ex-Girlfriend

Aubrey Wadford will be sentenced to 16 years to life in prison in Santa Barbara Superior Court next month

A Santa Barbara man has pled guilty to murdering his ex-girlfriend 2-1/2 years after she was found stabbed to death in her Los Olivos Street apartment.

Aubrey Dupree Wadford will be sentenced next month to 16 years to life behind bars, the Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s office announced Wednesday.

He also admitted the special allegation of using a deadly weapon to murder Angela Laskey in October 2014, the office said.

Wadford’s jury trial started last week in Santa Barbara Superior Court.

Police found Laskey face down in her apartment on the 500 block of West Los Olivos Street with multiple stab wounds after a neighbor heard screaming and called 9-1-1, authorities have said in court.

Wadford was at the apartment with blood on his hands and clothes, but appeared “calm and content,” police said.

Wadford and Laskey, both 39 at the time, had a daughter together, who was 2 years old at the time and was found unhurt in another room of the apartment.

During the trial’s opening statements last week, Wadford’s attorney, Deputy Public Defender Mindi Boulet, said that the couple’s routine arguments had escalated that night into a physical struggle that resulted in Wadford stabbing Laskey multiple times.

Boulet characterized Wadford as a dedicated father who was often over at Laskey’s to look after their daughter, and occasionally remained intimate with Laskey.

She said their intensifying arguments, his belief that her new relationship would not last, and Laskey’s intention to move back to her native United Kingdom with their daughter caused Wadford to panic when he woke up from a nap next to their daughter to find her gone from his side.

In her statements, prosecutor Hannah Lucy described Wadford as jealous and controlling, saying that his arguments with Laskey became increasingly confrontational and physical after she found a new boyfriend.

Wadford’s sentencing will be on May 26 in Judge Brian Hill's courtroom in Santa Barbara Superior Court.

Noozhawk staff writer Sam Goldman 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.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click here to get started >

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >