Man Accused of Killing Wife Inside Compton Home Charged With Murder: DA’s Office

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Sheriff's homicide detectives investigated a mother's death in Compton on June 23, 2017. (Credit: Chip Yost / KTLA)

A man accused of killing his wife in their family’s home in Compton pleaded not guilty on Wednesday to a murder charge, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Luis Ernesto Villanueva, 39, was living with his wife, Grecia Veronica Ayala, in the back house of Ayala’s parents’ home in the 12800 block of South Stoneacre Avenue.

On June 23, he allegedly told his wife’s family to go to the back house where they would find Ayala’s body wrapped in a comforter, the DA’s office said in a news release.

Authorities arrived on the scene a short while later and Ayala was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department identified the suspect as the slain woman’s boyfriend the day the homicide occurred, but the DA’s office said he was the victim’s husband.

A cause of death was not released, but sheriff’s officials indicated the woman had been possibly strangled.

Villanueva was arrested and charged with one count of murder.

He is scheduled to return to court in Compton July 12 for a preliminary hearing. Villanueva faces a possible maximum sentence of 25 years to life in state prison if convicted.

His bail was set at $2 million.