Judge Orders Handwriting Samples in Marine Wife Killing

The body of Brittany Killgore was discovered abandoned near Lake Skinner on April 17

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBCSanDiego
    (L-R) Lopez and Perez at Tuesday's hearing. Maraglino from a previous court hearing.

    Three people accused of luring a North County Marine wife to her death were ordered to provide writing samples at a pretrial hearing Tuesday.

    Dorothy Grace Marie Maraglino, 36; Jessica Lynn Lopez, 25 and U.S. Marine Staff Sgt. Louis Perez, 45, appeared in a Vista courtroom Tuesday to face a second felony complaint added to a first-degree murder charge.

    The three are accused of killing Marine wife Brittany Killgore, 22, of Fallbrook, after convincing her to go on a dinner cruise. Killgore was last seen April 13 wearing a purple evening gown. She texted the word "Help" to a friend according to prosecutors. Four days later her body was found abandoned near Lake Skinner in Riverside County.

    The judge ordered Maraglino, Lopez and Perez to provide handwriting samples to prosecutors. She also ordered a letter allegedly written by Lopez and found at the time of her arrest be kept under seal. 

    The San Diego Union Tribune published a report saying its staff had a copy of the handwritten note which reportedly refers to Maraglino as "Mistress" and Perez as "Master."

    Perez's defense attorney had argued the note should not be kept sealed.

    The judge also lifted the protective order on media coverage of the suspects allowing NBCSanDiego to publish images of all three suspects in court for the first time. The media was ordered to conceal the identiies of Perez and Lopez in prior court hearings.

    Lopez's attorney requested law enforcement keep her client away from Maraglino as they're both being held at Las Colinas Detention Facility. She cited one instance where officers put the two women in the same holding cell "for a chat." The judge approved her request.

    Click here for a timeline of the case

    A preliminary hearing was scheduled for August 20. 

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