Police Identify Trigger Man in Murder-Suicide

Times Staff Writer

While Redondo Beach police Sunday identified Eugenio Ibanez, 32, as the trigger man in an apparent murder-suicide that left four people dead, the motive for the killings in a home recording studio remained a mystery.

Police said Ibanez killed two men and a woman before taking his own life with a .25-caliber automatic pistol Friday in a wood-frame house in the 1900 block of Speyer Lane.

Authorities had gone to the working-class neighborhood after a 911 emergency call from a woman who said she had been shot in the head. Police stormed the house and discovered four bodies, including Ibanez, who was lying in a hallway with the pistol nearby.

The dead were identified as Phillip Randall Bleuer, 25, owner of the house whose body was found in a basement recording studio with stab wounds; Ricky Dean Byrd, 28, a Manhattan Beach drummer who died of multiple gunshot wounds in a stairwell leading to the studio, and Gloria Padilla, 26, found in a bedroom fully clothed near the telephone she had used to call police.

Police Have No Motive

Padilla, who moved to the South Bay two years ago from a small town near Albuquerque, N.M., lived in the house with Bleuer, who rented his studio to local bands to rehearse and record tapes. Padilla occasionally sang in a local band called Rage, whose drummer was Byrd.


Police Lt. Thomas Doty said investigators have no motive. He said Ibanez moved to the South Bay from Florida at least six months ago and may have been renting a room from Bleuer.

At first, police believed that Byrd had committed the killings. But late Saturday night, police realized that they had incorrectly identified the victims, confusing Byrd with Ibanez.