A Thousand Palms man accused of kidnapping, torturing and killing his former girlfriend in Sky Valley pleaded not guilty today to charges that could result in the death penalty if he’s convicted.
Carl Richard Perdock, 46, is accused in the death of 33-year-old Arianna Villareal of Desert Hot Springs, whose body was found in a shallow grave on Sept. 28.
Perdock is charged with murder and assault with a deadly weapon, along with special circumstance allegations of torture and kidnapping, which makes him eligible for a death sentence or life in prison without the possibility of parole if he’s found guilty.
The prosecution will decide later in the case whether to pursue capital punishment.
Perdock was arraigned this morning at the Larson Justice Center in Indio by Riverside County Superior Court Judge William S. Lebov, who appointed the Public Defender’s Office to represent him.
Perdock is due back in court Oct. 25 for a felony settlement conference.
On Sept. 27, Villareal’s boyfriend called 911 and alleged that Perdock, who had dated Villareal in the past, had assaulted her.
Robert McTaggart told a sheriff’s investigator that Perdock arrived at McTaggart’s residence with Villareal in the front passenger seat of his Jeep and a “sack” over her head, according to a declaration filed in support of a search warrant.
McTaggart told the investigator that Perdock carried Villareal to a bed and “he then heard Perdock ask for his brass knuckles” before stabbing Villareal with a pair of scissors, according to the document prepared by Riverside County sheriff’s Investigator Isaac White.
“(Villareal) was bleeding, and was so injured she could not even speak,” White wrote. “(Her boyfriend) watched as Perdock straddled Villareal
and struck her in the head several times with a closed fist, `like a cage fighter.”’
McTaggart alleged that Perdock “yelled statements like, `I’m going to kill you,”’ and the witness ran out of the residence to call 911, according to
the document prepared by White.
Perdock told an investigator that he saw a man with a shotgun in Villareal’s house when he came over that day, and said the man fired at him, but missed, before running off.
Villareal had a “hole” near her neck, according to Perdock, who said he took her to her boyfriend’s house to tend her wound and then drove her to
Longvue Road — where her body was later found by authorities. He said he tried giving her CPR until he realized she was dead, then stuffed her body in a
sleeping bag and buried her, according to White’s declaration.
“Perdock subsequently admitted to punching Villareal several times, and stabbing her with a pencil,” White wrote.
Sheriff’s Cpl. Angel Ramos said last month that a man called the sheriff’s department the afternoon of Sept. 27 to report an assault with a deadly weapon and said someone was “making threatening statements and was depressed over the break-up with his ex-girlfriend.”
Deputies found blood in Villareal’s bedroom at her residence on Hot Springs Road in Sky Valley, and further investigation led to a residence in the
22000 block of Longvue, where Perdock fled in a red Jeep Cherokee, breaking through a chain-link fence, according to White’s declaration.
Deputies gave chase, with a California Highway Patrol helicopter and K-9 officer joining in the pursuit and search that resulted in Perdock’s detainment about 4:30 that afternoon, Ramos said.
Perdock had what looked like blood and dirt on his clothes, and dirt on his head when taken into custody, according to the declaration, which says a
detective found a shotgun and brass knuckles at the scene where Villareal’s body was found in the early morning hours on Sept. 28.
Perdock is being held without bail at the county jail in Indio.