Girlfriend of Murder Suspect Charged


The girlfriend of a man accused of murdering his estranged wife and attempting to kill his daughter was charged Tuesday with aiding the man while he was being sought by police.

Sonia Bianca Siegel, 43, pleaded not guilty in San Fernando Municipal Court to one count of being an accessory after the fact to crimes allegedly committed by Robert Peernock of Tarzana.

Peernock’s wife, Claire Peernock, 45, and daughter, Natasha, 18, were found July 22 in Peernock’s car. The auto had been doused with gasoline and had struck a utility pole in Sun Valley in what police said was a staged accident .


An autopsy on Claire Peernock determined that she died before the crash from head wounds that were inconsistent with a traffic accident, Los Angeles Police Lt. Bernard D. Conine said. Her daughter had similar wounds, he said, but has recovered.

Siegel was arrested Thursday after a police investigation concluded that she had spoken to Peernock on the telephone between the date his wife was killed, July 22, and his arrest Sept. 4, said Deputy Dist. Atty. Pamela Davis-Springer.

Siegel, despite police warnings that she not assist him in any way, also obtained Peernock’s signature on bank documents granting her permission to withdraw money from his accounts, Springer said.

When he was arrested, Peernock had $25,000 in cash and a guide book to Australia, Springer said. He has pleaded not guilty and is being held without bail in County Jail.

Siegel is being held without bail at Sybil Brand Institute. A preliminary hearing is scheduled Oct. 23.