CHULA VISTA, Calif. — New information is coming out in the criminal case against Larry Millete, the Chula Vista father of three charged with murdering his wife, Maya Millete.
Two lawsuits filed by relatives of accused killer were transferred to federal court this week. Both lawsuits allege civil rights violations when Chula Vista police served search warrants related to the criminal case.
Ricky Lincoln and Kathy Fredericks, Millete’s uncle and maternal aunt, filed a lawsuit in state court in May alleging Chula Vista police illegally served a search warrant on April 1, 2021 at the couple’s home in Encanto.
“They were searching for Larry Millete's gun parts,” the lawsuit said.
That lawsuit -- as well as a similar lawsuit filed in May by Millete's parents -- were transferred this week to federal court because they allege civil rights violations.
Buried in the civil court filings is new information related to Millete’s criminal case.
“Police officers took not only Millete's gun parts, but also guns that plaintiff Lincoln owned that plaintiff Lincoln had inherited from his father, and a freezer from the kitchen, that Lincoln had borrowed from Larry Millete,” the lawsuit said.
Prosecutors allege Millete murdered his wife, Maya Millete, and dumped her body at a remote location. Her remains have not been found.
“It's our position that the children were present when their father murdered their mother in the home and took steps to hide and dispose of her body while the children were at home,” Deputy District Attorney Christy Bowles said in Chula Vista court on Wednesday.
Judge Dwayne Moring ruled Wednesday that Larry Millete can resume communication from jail with his three children, ages 5, 11, and 12. Millete will only be allowed to write letters to his kids, as recommended by a court-appointed guardian for the minors, who must approve the letters in advance.
“The children all wish to have contact with their father,” wrote the guardian, Kelley James, in an emailed report to the parties.
“It is my opinion that it would be appropriate for the children to have contact with their father through letter writing only,” James wrote.
"The children are all doing remarkably well, and it has been about a year since they have had any contact with their father. Unfortunately, it would impossible to stop father from blurting out something inappropriate during a call or a visit, even if supervised," James wrote.
Millete recently was found mentally competent to stand trial.
His defense attorney, Bonita Martinez, wrote in court papers that her client was suffering great pain, after being court ordered a year ago not to have any contact with his kids.
“Defendant has been engulfed by anguish and distress. He has experienced brain fog, decreased mental energy and sharpness, inability to focus, memory impairments, mental fatigue. He is overpowered with excess sorrow and mental pain and emotional pain,” Martinez wrote in a motion to the court.
The first time the public will get to see evidence in the criminal case will be at the preliminary hearing, which currently is set for Jan. 11, 2023.
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