Ashton Kutcher was spotted looking rather serious as he got out of his car in Beverly Hills on Wednesday, just hours after it emerged that he may be called to testify in his ex-girlfriend’s murder trial.
The 41-year-old was pictured parking his car in the Los Angeles neighborhood. He was seen wearing some sleek jeans and a matching denim jacket over a white t-shirt, as well as a pair of brown shoes. As reported by The Daily Mail, Kutcher looked slightly concerned, which may be due to the fact that he might be summoned to court to relive one of the most painful experiences of his life.
Kutcher was added to a list of 200 potential witnesses in the trial of Michael Gargiulo, who has been nicknamed “The Hollywood Ripper.” Gargiulo stands accused of murdering three women in the late ’90s and early 2000s, including Kutcher’s ex-girlfriend, Ashley Ellerin. Ellerin was found, murdered, in her apartment in 2001.
Ellerin, a fashion student and model, was 22 years old when she was mutilated on the night of February 21. Gargiulo allegedly broke into her apartment and stabbed her to death. The defendant was an air conditioning repairman at the time, while Kutcher was a star on the That ’70s Show.
The actor was supposed to pick up his girlfriend that night, so that they could both attend a Grammys after-party. However, he ended up leaving when no one answered the door. He later told investigators that he thought she didn’t open the door because she was upset with him for being late. On his way out, he reportedly looked through the window only to see what he thought was red wine spilled on the floor. Said liquid later turned out to be blood from her wounds.
Ellerin’s roommate found her corpse the next day. Ellerin had suffered 47 gaping wounds — with some up to 6-inches deep — across her neck, chest, stomach, and back. She was reportedly attacked by a knife-wielding intruder as she was taking a shower. According to Kutcher’s friends, the star had nightmares about finding his girlfriend’s body for years.
It was the victim’s friends who told police they suspected Gargiulo. Gargiulo lived nearby, and had already been to her apartment to do some repair work. They told detectives he had been acting weird, had showed up at Ellerin’s house late at night, and had even sat outside her door in his pickup truck. However, police could not gather enough evidence to link him to the crime and charge him, so Ellerin’s case was left unsolved.
Four years later, another vicious crime took place in the same Los Angeles complex where Gargiulo lived. Maria Bruno, who had recently split from her husband had and moved to L.A., was butchered to death in her bed on December 1, 2005. Both murders remained unsolved until 2008, when yet another brutal murder attempt happened on April 28 in Santa Monica. Michelle Murphy woke up to a man stabbing her, and despite the attacker leaving her with 17 knife wounds, she survived.
Gargiulo allegedly left his own blood at the last victim’s apartment, and he was arrested and charged just weeks later — when his DNA reportedly matched, per The Daily Mail. The same blood sample matched the DNA found at Bruno and Ellerin’s apartments.
Years later, Gargiulo is finally facing trial. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.