A California man who was accused of dumping a human torso last week has been charged with three counts of murder.
The charges came a week after the torso of Samuel Haskell’s wife Mei Haskell was found in a dumpster by a homeless man sifting through trash. The Los Angeles Police Department previously said that Mei’s parents Gaoshan Li, 72, and Yanxiang Wang, 64, were also missing.
Following a court appearance on Monday, Mr Haskell, 35, was accused of killing his three family members. Mr Haskell’s children, who were in school when their mother’s dismembered torso was discovered on 8 November, are in the custody of the DCFS.
“These shocking and gruesome crimes have sent shockwaves through our community. We stand with the victims’ loved ones during this unimaginably difficult time and will do everything in our power to ensure justice is served.,” District Attorney Gascón said in a statement. “Our Major Crimes Division will work tirelessly to bring about a prosecution that reflects the severity of this devastating crime.”
The victims were last seen on or about 6 November at their home in the affluent neighbourhood of Tarzana. The following day, Mr Haskell allegedly hired four day-labourers to haul three heavy black plastic trash bags from his garage.
One of the workers called 911 after he realised one of the bags contained human body parts. However, by the time LAPD officers arrived at the home, the bags had been removed from the driveway of the residence, where the labourers had left him after returning the $500 they had been paid, NBC reports.
Mr Haskell was later linked to the torso found in Encino through surveillance video reviewed by police.
It remains unclear whether Li and Wang’s bodies have been found. The Independent has reached out to the LAPD for comment.
Police said last week that blood found in Mr Haskell’s home suggested that is where the crimes took place.
Mr Haskell Jr is being held without bail.
He is the son of former Miss Mississippi Mary Donnelly Haskell and Emmy-winning Hollywood producer Sam Haskell Sr, a former Hollywood agent who once represented the likes of Dolly Parton, George Clooney, Whoopi Goldberg, Martin Short and Prince Edward.