Eric Allen Earle
The live-in boyfriend of murder victim Karla Barda has been rearrested on suspicion of causing her death and is expected to be charged with one count of murder.
Eric Allen Earle, 40, was arrested Wednesday afternoon in Northridge by a surveillance team of federal marshals and was booked at the East L.A. Sheriff’s Station, according the lead homicide detective in the case. He is being held in lieu of $1 million bail.
“The marshals decided to help us out on the case once the arrest warrant was issued,” said Sheriff’s Lt. Eddie Hernandez.
Earle was arrested Sept. 1, the day he called deputies to tell them that his roommate was not breathing. He was intoxicated and belligerent to deputies during his arrest, but complied with questioning and cooperated once behind bars. His jail stay, at that time, was short, regaining his freedom September 6.
“We had to release him because we had no cause of death,” Hernandez said. “He didn’t admit to any wrongdoing and at the time, we had no probable cause to hold him.”
Hernandez said that since his release, the investigation continued, despite delays from the Coroner’s office on determining a cause of death. Interviews were conducted with witnesses and people came forward with information about Earle and Barda’s relationship and background.
“What took the longest was the official autopsy report,” Hernandez said. “It was deferred for many, many months as they looked into the victim’s medical history and allegations of drug use because she had been in a rehab program.
“The Coroner finally determined the cause of death to be asphyxiation at the hands of another, which is a homicide. Once that occurred, we were able to put a case together and the district attorney said there was sufficient cause to charge him with murder.”
Eric Earle & Karla Barda in better days | Photos courtesy of the Barda family
The arrest warrant was issued January 12. To read about his first arrest, click here. To read the original story, click here.
Earle is scheduled to appear in San Fernando Superior Court Friday for arraignment.
File Photo by Elliott Cohen for SCVNews.com