It is finally now a death sentence for Michael Gargiulo aka Hollywood Ripper for the murder of two women; including Ashton Kutcher’s girlfriend of 2001.

Who is Michael Gargiulo?

Gargiulo is a former air conditioner and heater repairman, bouncer, and also aspiring actor. His nicknames from media outlets included “The Chiller Killer” along with “The Hollywood Ripper.”

Moreover, he was known as, “The Boy Next Door Killer” by prosecutors because he lived near the victims he stalked then attacked in their homes.

In 2019 Gargiulo murdered Ashley Ellerin, 22, in Hollywood in 2001, and Maria Bruno, 32. He murdered them in 2005 after stabbing them in their Southern California homes.

Michael Gargiulo, Hollywood Ripper
Michael Gargiulo, Hollywood Ripper

In 2008, he also attempted to kill Michelle Murphy, 26, in Santa Monica but was caught through DNA samples collected after fighting him off.

The court hearing and death sentencing of the Hollywood Ripper

Victims’ family members wept as Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fidler handed down the sentence to 45-year-old Michael Thomas Gargiulo.

“Everywhere that Mr. Gargiulo went, death and destruction followed him,” Fidler said at the all-day hearing.

Gargiulo’s case received added attention because one of his victims was about to go on a date with actor Ashton Kutcher, who testified at the trial. The sentencing, delayed by procedural issues and the pandemic, came nearly two years after a jury convicted Gargiulo and recommended his execution.

The 2001 homicide of Ashley Ellerin

Gargiulo was guilty of the 2001 homicide of Ashley Ellerin, a 22-year-old fashion design understudy, in her Hollywood home as she prepared to go out with Kutcher. At the trial, Kutcher said that he was late to get Ellerin, who didn’t answer the door.

Hollywood Ripper trial Ashton Kutcher
Ashton Kutcher testifying against Michael Thomas Gargiulo

As he peeked inside he saw bloodstains that he thought were spilled wine. Investigators used him in their closing arguments, proposing Ellerin was killed by another man who was jealous of Kutcher. Ellerin was found with 47 stab injuries.

Her father, Michael Ellerin, was one of the relatives who spoke at the hearing of their suffering as they waited years for justice.

Furthemore, in 2008, he also attempted to kill Michelle Murphy 26 in Santa Monica, but police caught him through his DNA after Michelle fought him off

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Ashton married Mila Kunis in 2015 and it took them 14 years to start dating again. The couple now lives a happy life with each other.

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