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LA Event Planner Accused Of Killing Model And Her Friend May Have Had More Victims, DA Says

“You are not alone,” Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said in a plea for other "potential survivors" to come forward after authorities officially announced murder charges against David Pearce for the deaths of Christy Giles and Hilda Marcela Cabrales-Arzola.

By Jill Sederstrom
Christy Giles Instagram

The Los Angeles event planner accused of killing model Christy Giles and her friend Hilda Marcela Cabrales-Arzola may have had other victims, according to authorities.

Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón announced the murder charges against 40-year-old David Pearce at a press conference Tuesday, while also urging other “potential survivors” who may have interacted with the freelance event planner to come forward.

“You are not alone,” Gascón said, according to a statement from his office.

Pearce had been one of three men captured on surveillance footage leaving a warehouse afterparty the morning of Nov. 13 with Giles and Arzola.

Later that same day, Giles’ lifeless body was dumped outside the Southern California Hospital in Culver City by two men driving a Toyota Prius with no license plate, The Los Angeles Times reported earlier this year.

A short time later, an unconscious Arzola was left at Kaiser Permanente West Los Angeles hospital. The 26-year-old architect died 11 days later.

While the investigation into the women’s deaths continued, Pearce was charged in December for a string of unrelated alleged rapes and sexual assaults of four different women dating back to 2010.

On Tuesday, Gascón said authorities were unable to uncover enough evidence not only to charge Pearce with the murder of Giles, 24, and Arzola, but also to link him to the sexual assaults of three additional women.

“We knew that this was going to be a lengthy investigation, and we started with the charges we knew that we could prove,” he said, according to The New York Post. “Most had to do with the using and the administration of drugs.

Pearce is now accused of sexually assaulting seven women beginning in 2007 and is facing charges of rape of an unconscious or asleep person, two counts of sexual penetration by a foreign object, three counts of forcible rape, and sodomy by use of force, according to court documents obtained by Oxygen.com.

In the case of Giles and Arzola, he’s been charged with two counts of murder and two counts of the sale/transport/furnish of controlled substances.

His friend, actor Brandt Osborn, 42, has also been charged with two counts of accessory after the fact for allegedly trying to help conceal the crime.

“I recognize that these charges are a small consolation to the friends and family members of Ms. Arzola and Ms. Giles,” Gascón said. “I’m sure that they want to know what happened to their loved ones and why. Today we are one step closer in the search for that truth. And although we know nothing can bring these daughters and friends back to us, I promise that my office will do everything in its power to hold those that harmed them accountable.” 

Pearce’s attorney Jacob Glucksman told The Post that he believed the charges against his client had been built around “weak evidence.”

“All the allegations, including the new charges, are based on extremely weak evidence,” he said. “The DA’s Office is prosecuting under the premise of ‘Where there’s smoke there’s fire.’ The problem is, they haven’t yet located any fire.”

Oxygen.com reached out to Glucksman Tuesday but did not receive an immediate response.

Giles and Arzola were spotted on surveillance camera footage leaving the warehouse afterparty with Pearce, Osborn and a third man, Michael Ansbach, around 5 a.m. on Nov. 13 before the group headed to Pearce and Osborn’s Olympic Boulevard apartment, according to an affidavit obtained by The Los Angeles Times.

Ansbach has not been charged in connection to the case.

Shortly after arriving at the apartment, around 5:20 a.m., Giles texted Arzola “Let’s go” with a wide-eyed emoji.

Arzola responded texting back “yes” and telling her friend, “I’ll call an Uber. 10 min away.”

But by the time an Uber arrived, the women never came out of the building and it eventually drove off.

The two women were dumped at separate hospitals later that day. The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner’s Office would later determine that Giles, 24, died of “multiple drug intoxication” and had cocaine, fentanyl, ketamine and gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) in her system at the time of her death.

Arzola, who died in the hospital on Nov. 24, died of multiple organ failure and multiple drug intoxication, including cocaine, MDMA and “probable other” undetermined drugs, according to a report from the coroner’s office.

Giles husband Jan Cilliers told The Post Tuesday after the announcement by the district attorney that he was pleased criminal charges have been filed.

“There can never be true justice for the death of Christy and Marcela,” Cilliers said. “Nothing will ever bring them back, and their deaths will affect the rest of our lives. The best we can hope for now is that the full truth comes out and that they are put away for the maximum amount of time so they can no longer hurt anyone else.”

Both men are scheduled to be arraigned on July 11, authorities said.

The investigation remains ongoing and Gascón has asked that other potential victims who had contact with either Pearce or Osborn reach out to investigators. Victims have been urged to call the district attorney’s office at (877) 542-9370 or the Los Angeles Police Department’s West Homicide Bureau at (213) 382-9470.

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