Larry Millete, accused of killing his wife Maya, denied bail at hearing

Local

Correction: An earlier version of this story contained incorrect information about the state of the case. The case remains in pre-trial stages.

CHULA VISTA, Calif. — A judge has denied bail for Larry Millete, the Chula Vista man charged with the murder of his missing wife Maya, as he awaits further hearings.

“There’s clear and convincing evidence that he’s threatened to commit grave bodily injury,” said Judge Maryann D’Addezio. “And there’s a substantial likelihood he would carry out that threat if released. Additionally, there’s clear and convincing evidence that he’s a danger to the community.”

Larry’s attorney, Bonita Martinez, had argued her client posed no flight risk or risk of harming others, emphasizing Larry’s military service and his job as an optician at the Naval Medical Training Center. She said her client was willing to wear a tracking bracelet and only travel to and from work.

But Judge D’Addezio cited evidence submitted by prosecutors of previous threats of violence made by the father and noted that, for the purposes of bail hearings, the court must presume allegations are true in determining if the person can be eligible.

“The court is required to assume that the charges are true,” D’Addezio said. “Mr. Millete is alleged to have killed his wife in their home while his three children were present. He’s also alleged to have taken their 4-year-old son with him to dispose of her body.”

In the time since his arrest in October on suspicion of murder and a weapons charge, Millete has remained in custody at San Diego Central Jail. In his first court appearance, the father of three formally pleaded not guilty to each of his charges. In his second, the judge rebuked Millete for making hours of calls to his children from a jail phone, which she said directly violated a protective order forbidding the dad from contacting his kids.

That violation was cited as another reason for D’Addezio to deny bail Thursday.

Prosecutors have argued emphatically against Larry getting released on bail. In a document titled “People’s Request to Deny Bail” filed Oct. 21, the district attorney’s office laid out its case for keeping Millete in custody.

It contained new revelations, including the claim from prosecutors that Maya told a friend in December 2020, “I don’t think he would hurt me, but I think he would hurt the kids to get back at me.”

On another occasion, the DA’s office says Maya warned of Larry’s capacity for anger. “Larry does have a scary temper,” she wrote in a June text message, according to the filing. “Nothing the people outside of the family have seen.”

The request to deny bail also circled back to findings from a comprehensive affidavit filed by a detective earlier in the case. That included Larry’s research on poisons, his hiring of “spellcasters” to harm or control his wife, and his obsession with keeping a man who Maya had an affair with away from her, according to prosecutors.

In court Thursday, Deputy District Attorney Christy Bowles primarily reiterated the arguments laid out in the filings. “He’s a flight risk,” Bowles said, adding, “there’s a public safety concern.”

“When he fears that he’s losing control, he can become violent,” the Deputy D.A. told the judge. “The children are of paramount concern.”

Maya, who worked for the U.S. Department of Defense in Point Loma and lived with her family of five in a Chula Vista suburb, has been missing for nearly 10 months.

Police and volunteer groups continue to search areas across the region for any sign of Maya, whose body has not been found. The District Attorney spoke to FOX 5 last month about the challenges associated with trying someone for murder without the remains of the person they’re accused of killing.

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