3RD UPDATE, 3:39 p.m .: The Hollywood therapist’s ex-boyfriend, Dr Amie Harwick, has been on trial for murder in connection with his death last year.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Michael E. Pastor today ruled the prosecution presented “more than enough evidence” against Gareth Pursehouse in the death of Harwick, a family and sex therapist respected and ex-fiancee of Drew Carey who was thrown from the third-story balcony of his Hollywood Hills home on February 15, 2020.
Prosecutors allege Pursehouse, now 43, was “obsessed” with Harwick. He is charged with one count each of murder and first-
residential burglary of degree, as well as the allegation of special circumstances of having watched which means that he could face the death penalty if convicted.
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Deputy District Attorney Victor Avila told the judge the events that culminated in Harwick’s death began with an exchange about a month earlier between the victim and Pursehouse outside the entertainment awards ceremony for adults XBiz at the JW Marriott in Los Angeles, during which he allegedly told her that she had ruined his life and called her a “bitch”.
Avila said the accused broke into Harwick’s house and waited about four hours for her to return in an attempt to “surprise” her as she was armed with a syringe containing a “lethal” dose of nicotine.
“With his strength he throws her over the balcony,” the deputy court attorney said, noting that the 5-foot-4, 120-pound woman had likely fought against Pursehouse, who is 6-foot-3 and 100 pounds. heavier than it was.
DNA evidence found under his fingernails and on a patio door in his living room linked Pursehouse to the attack, Avila said.
One of Pursehouse’s attorneys, Jannet Santiso, noted that the DNA evidence could not be dated, nor the scratches and bruises subsequently found by police at Pursehouse. She also asked if the DNA evidence could have been contaminated.
Another defense attorney, Robin Bernstein-Lev, told the judge that testimony that Pursehouse seemed emotional and distraught when he and Harwick met outside of the awards ceremony on January 16, 2020, did not prove anything. other than trying to talk to her. .
There was “no evidence that Mr Pursehouse ever threatened to harm” Harwick and “no evidence of murderous intent” on Pursehouse’s part, Bernstein-Lev said. “There is no evidence that she was thrown from a balcony. … They are asking this tribunal to speculate.
Read more details on the case below.
2ND UPDATE, April 16, 2020: Hollywood therapist’s ex-boyfriend Dr Amie Harwick pleaded not guilty to murder today in Los Angeles. Gareth Pursehouse is accused of killing Harwick, Drew Carey’s ex-fiancée, who was thrown from the third-floor balcony of his Hollywood Hills home on February 15.
Pursehouse could face the death penalty if convicted of murder, which includes a special circumstance allegation of ambush. Prosecutors will decide later whether to seek the death penalty against him. Read the details of the case below.
UPDATE, February 20: Potentially facing the death penalty, her ex-boyfriend accused of murdering Dr Amie Harwick last weekend will remain in jail until at least March 4.
An indictment of Gareth Pursehouse slated for this morning in downtown Los Angeles criminal courts was pushed back early next month by Judge Miguel Espinoza. Based on his own order on Thursday, the Los Angeles Superior Court judge will formally oversee Pursehouse on March 4, who was re-arrested yesterday afternoon without bail after posting a $ 2 million bond within hours. previously charged with one count each of murder and first-degree residential burglary with the special circumstance allegation of being on the lookout.
Pursehouse will remain in custody with the possibility of bail until next month and possibly beyond if the LA DA county office does what it wants.
PREVIOUSLY, FEB. 7 p.m .: The ex-boyfriend who authorities say killed Dr Amie Harwick on February 15 is back behind bars and faces the death penalty for the death of the Hollywood therapist.
Less than 24 hours after posting a $ 2 million bond and being released, Gareth Pursehouse was arrested for the second time today by the LAPD and will be brought to trial tomorrow in a downtown courtroom. city of Los Angeles. The LA County District Attorney’s Office has charged Pursehouse with one count of murder and first-degree residential burglary with the special circumstance allegation of waiting.
Pursehouse was first arrested by cops on Saturday afternoon near his residence in Playa del Rey.
Now held without bail, it was this latest part of the charges that put the suspect on hold for the death penalty in the Golden State. Whether or not Jackie Lacey’s office will pursue the death penalty for Pursehouse, or life in prison without parole, will be finalized later, DA officials said Wednesday. Although California still applies the death penalty, Gov. Gavin Newsom put the brakes on further executions by official moratorium in March of last year.
Harwick, 38, Drew Carey’s former fiancée, was killed in the alleged altercation with Pursehouse in the wee hours of Saturday at her Hollywood Hills home. Respected family and sex therapist, Harwick appeared in the 2015 documentary Addicted to sexting. Her and The price is right host Carey dated for about a year before the two went their separate ways in 2018.
After dating Pursehouse for the past few years, Harwick received a restraining order against him following their breakup. That order had expired and the duo had seen each other in the last few weeks before the attack on Harwick’s home last weekend, according to the LAPD. This meeting was casually at an industry event, I hear.
Taken to a nearby hospital once police were called, the LA County Medical Examiner’s Department said the therapist died from blunt injuries to his head and torso. A report released yesterday classified Harwick’s death as a homicide. The coroner’s office added that the injuries occurred when she fell from the third-floor balcony after an altercation. He also found “evidence of manual throttling.”
Deputy LADA Victor Avila of the Major Crimes Division and Deputy LADARJ Dreiling of the Domestic Violence Division are pursuing the case for the county. The LAPD said the case was still considered an ongoing investigation.
Jackie Lacey faces a tough challenge in the primary on March 3 in her third-term bid, with two of her own assistants in the race to replace the incumbent, as well as former San Francisco cop and DA George Gascon.
Erik Pedersen and City News Service contributed to this report.