3 defendants in suspected love-triangle killing in San Juan Capistrano plead guilty
Three defendants in the ambush, fatal stabbing of a man near Trabuco Creek in San Juan Capistrano pleaded guilty this week to second-degree murder.
Anjelica Marie Shibata, 34, of San Juan Capistrano, Ashkan Dezhangfard, 28, of San Juan Capistrano and Siavash Hosseinaliarhani, 25, of Laguna Niguel pleaded guilty on Thursday, Jan. 27.
The trial of a fourth defendant, Brion Cairo Hyde, 28, of San Juan Capistrano is about to start.
The punishment for second-degree murder is often 15 years to life in prison. Hyde, charged with murder with a special-circumstance allegation of lying in wait, faces life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted.
Two other defendants previously pleaded guilty, both to voluntary manslaughter: Ryan Timothy Huebner and Myles Emmanuel Jones, who are both 27.
Shibata and Hyde were living together as a couple in San Juan Capistrano but Shibata was also romantically involved with Alvaro Rios when the 38-year-old married father was killed, authorities have said.
Shibata allegedly asked Rios to meet her in a remote area near a bike path in San Juan Capistrano in the early morning of July 12, 2016, prosecutors have said. All of the defendants were accused of being there when Rios was attacked and left for dead. A jogger found the body the next day and called the Sheriff’s Department.
When Rios’ wife found out about the affair, she started posting negative comments about Shibata on Facebook, according to Jones’ attorney, Doug Myers.
Investigators suspect Shibata told Hyde that Rios had raped her, and then the two told the others about the alleged sexual assault, which led to the alleged ambush, the defense attorney said.
Myers has said that two defendants brought knives to the planned beating, but it is unclear which defendant dealt the fatal wound.
It’s not clear if the rape allegation is true or not, Myers said when his client pleaded guilty in 2019.