A 27-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the “diabolical, premeditated” killings of a doctor, his wife and their 5-year-old daughter, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown announced Friday.
Pierre Haobsh was taken into custody at gunpoint in Oceanside about 12:30 a.m. Friday in San Diego County, Brown said at a mid-afternoon news conference.
The Oceanside resident, who was described as a business associate of the doctor, had been sought in connection with the triple homicide, according to the sheriff.
Dr. Weidong Henry Han, 57; wife, Huijie Yu, 29; and daughter, Emily Han; were found slain in the family’s hilltop home in an upscale area above the 101 Freeway between Santa Barbara and Goleta on Wednesday evening, a news release from the Sheriff’s Office stated.
Deputies discovered the bodies after receiving a call to perform a “welfare check” at the residence, according to the release.
"The call came from a colleague of Dr. Han’s who said that he had not shown up for a business meeting in Los Angeles that morning, which was highly uncharacteristic of him, and that no one had heard from him or been able to contact him since that time," Brown stated.
Autopsies had not been completed on the victims, but Brown stated that all three family members had been shot.
Brown also revealed that the victims were each wrapped in plastic, duct-taped and found in the garage.
Investigators have called the killings a “horrific” crime.
"This was a diabolical, premeditated crime -- one of the most odious that I have ever been involved with," Brown said.
The motive remains under investigation, but authorities believe Haobsh was involved in a recent business transaction with the doctor, the release stated.
The three could have been killed for financial gain, Brown said. He called the investigation “complex and ongoing.”
Investigators recovered a loaded 9mm handgun, as well as property belonging to one of the victims, in Haobsh’s car, according to the release.
The suspect was expected to be booked into Santa Barbara County jail on three counts of suspicion of murder.
Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff’s anonymous tip line at 805-681-4171.