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An acrimonious divorce following a two-year-long marriage appears to have been a factor in the Christmas Eve rampage committed by Bruce Pardo, who slaughtered his ex-wife, Sylvia Pardo, and eight of her relatives in Covina, California. Dressed in a Santa Claus suit, Bruce arrived at his former in-laws' home:
Divorce Finalized Days before the Slaughter
The couple's contentious divorce was finalized Dec. 18th. Their settlement gave Sylvia their house in Montrose. Bruce was also ordered to pay her $10,000. The couple appeared in court on the 18th, and Bruce gave no indication of the carnage that was to come. Fired in July 2008 from his job as an electrical engineer, he was deeply in debt by the time of the killings.
Debt, Alimony Arguments
Sylvia filed the divorce in early 2007, claiming that Bruce had already drawn down their $88,500 savings to $17,000 in just two months by transferring funds. Following his job termination from ITT Electronic Systems in Van Nuys, Bruce, 45, asked the court to award him spousal support and attorney fees from Sylvia, who was making about $31,000 at a flower-breeding company and raising her five-year-old daughter.
After the murders, Bruce’s body was found with a bullet to the head, a plane ticket from Los Angeles to Canada, and $17,000 in cash strapped to it. Apparently he planned to flee to Canada after the massacre, but after shooting everyone in the home and spraying racing fuel around the house, Bruce caught fire himself when he ignited the fuel. The Santa suit was melted to his corpse.
(Source: USA Today)
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