Police Allege California Pastor Paid Hitmen to Murder Daughter’s Boyfriend

Samuel Pasillas, a 47-year-old pastor from Victorville, California, got arrested on March 13 amid severe legal issues. Accusations against him include orchestrating a murder-for-hire plot targeting his daughter’s boyfriend, sparking significant public interest. The attack happened on October 21, 2023, in Riverside’s Orangecrest neighborhood. The target, shot at several times while driving, survived and got to a hospital.

Charges Filed Against Samuel Pasillas

Samuel Pasillas is charged with:

  1. Solicitation for Murder (California Penal Code §653f): Asking someone to commit murder.
  2. Conspiracy to Commit Murder (California Penal Code §182): Planning with others to commit murder and starting to act on that plan.
  3. Attempted Murder (California Penal Code §§187 and 664): Trying to kill someone but not succeeding.
  4. Assault with a Deadly Weapon (California Penal Code §245): Attacking someone with a weapon that could seriously hurt or kill them.

Authorities also arrested Juan Manuel Cebreros, 55, from Long Beach, on charges of conspiracy to commit murder and attempted murder, highlighting his alleged role in the plot.

Incident Details

On the attack evening, the victim described a harrowing experience, shot at from another vehicle due to Pasillas’s alleged crimes. Investigators found Pasillas met with the hired attackers, giving them the victim’s location that evening. The assailants monitored the victim for weeks, leading to the Pasillas-financed attack with nearly $40,000.

Legal Defense and Consequences

Their defense may search for weaknesses in the evidence. They could claim no concrete evidence connects them to the crime. Given the risk of long prison terms, they will likely doubt the evidence’s reliability and question the accused’s intent. Weak evidence or witness statements not directly linking them to the crime are key. They aim to dispute charges of hiring for murder, plotting, attempted killing, and weapon use.

The ongoing investigation aims to expose every aspect of this case, ensuring justice prevails and demonstrating the legal system’s ability to tackle complex criminal conspiracies.

Legal Proceedings and Bail

Following their arrest, both Pasillas and Cebreros were detained on $1 million bail each.

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