A man accused of killing his wife at their Newport Coast home and leaving her body on the U.S. side of the Mexican border was released from jail Wednesday, court records show.
Peter Gregory Chadwick, 48, who is charged with murder, posted bail and was released from jail at 1:47 a.m., jail records show.
One of the sentencing enhancements against him, murder for financial gain, was dropped, court records show. The charge carried "special circumstance enhancements," meaning his penalty could have been enhanced upon conviction.
"At this point we felt it was appropriate to proceed on one felony count of murder," said D.A. spokeswoman Farrah Emami.
She said the investigation was ongoing and a special circumstance enhancement could be added later.
Authorities were first alerted that something was amiss between Chadwick and his wife, Quee Choo Chadwick, 46, when no one picked up their children from school on Oct. 10, prosecutors have said.
When police searched their Newport Coast home they saw blood and signs of a struggle. A neighbor told the Daily Pilot she heard screaming at about the time of the crime.
Chadwick was arrested after contacting authorities in San Diego County, near the border with Mexico, according to prosecutors.