Husband and wife, Michael Barbar (51) and Maysam Barbar (43), raised two daughters from birth, in Perris, California. Upon mounting suspicion, that his wife had been unfaithful, Mr. Barbar took it upon himself to investigate the paternity of his 6-year-old Tamara using a cheek swab. The truth emerged that Maysam had carrying on three separate affairs, and that their youngest daughter was not biologically his. A few days after the DNA confirmation, on the eve of November 13, 2009, Barbar handcuffed his spouse and choked her with an electric cord. Similarly, he took a television cord and strangled Tamara. When she attempted to fight, he bashed her skull into the bedpost.
The eldest daughter survived the ordeal physically untouched. Instead she was forced to listen to the horrifying sounds of her father brutally murdering her mother and sister, left to discover evidence of the crime the next morning, and call 911. The Huffington Post reported, “Barbar’s 13-year-old daughter Tarah testified that she heard her younger sister’s cries and her father marching up and down the stairs carrying garbage bags as she lay in bed the night of the killings. The next morning, she found her sister’s bed covered in blood and her mother’s room locked.”
Police thwarted his attempt to escape to Mexico and Barbar was apprehended within two days of committing his crimes. On July 13, 2012 a Riverside, California jury convicted him on two charges for first-degree murder in the deaths of his wife and non-biological daughter, and recommended death, after three hours or deliberation. Prosecutors presented evidence the defendant prepared to execute his crimes in advance: fake identification, rental car, researched flight schedules to other countries, and had withdrawn $30,000 from his bank account, derailing Barbar’s crime of passion defense.
Michael Barbar was officially sentenced to death Friday, December 14 2012. Judge Edward Websterordered Barbar to death row at San Quentin. That means Michael Barbar will have a choice between lethal injection or the gas chamber if he is unable to successfully appeal the decision or have it commuted to life in prison.