Police, Lawyer Know Little of Officer’s Killer


Arnaldo de Villa Castillo, the killer of San Diego Police Officer Ronald W. Davis, remained a mystery man Wednesday as investigators and his attorney struggled to piece together sparse information about his life.

San Diego police know so little about the 34-year-old man who committed suicide half a day after killing Davis that the department has asked other law enforcement agencies in the county to check their records to see if their officers had any contacts with him, a law enforcement official told The Times.

“They don’t know diddly about the guy. The other agencies are being asked to check if their guys ever did (a field interrogation) with him, or had any other contact with him,” said the official.

Meanwhile, a lawyer who represented Castillo in his divorce case said that he too knows precious little about his client’s life. San Diego attorney Jesse G. Quinsaat filed Castillo’s petition to divorce his wife, Jocelyn Manalo Castillo, on Sept. 25, 1990. Castillo cited irreconcilable differences in pursuing the divorce.


“It’s a sad story. He was a quiet guy. He wasn’t a boisterous or angry sort. . . . He definitely was not a drug dealer or gang guy as some have speculated,” Quinsaat said.

Castillo was terminated in August from his maintenance job at Children’s Hospital, where he earned $550 a month.

“I last saw him about a month ago, and he was worried about his finances. He said that he really wasn’t making a lot of money at Children’s,” Quinsaat said.

About two weeks ago, Castillo called Quinsaat from Alaska, where he was supposedly working in a fish cannery, the attorney added. Quinsaat said that Castillo’s girlfriend, Lilia Bautista, arranged for him to call the attorney to discuss the divorce proceedings.


Police said that Bautista was savagely beaten by Castillo early Tuesday morning, about an hour before he fatally shot Davis in the throat and shoulder.

Court records show that Castillo and his wife had two children. The children, now teen-agers, live in the Philippines with their maternal grandfather. Quinsaat said that Castillo was a permanent resident of the U.S. who had not returned to the Philippines since 1979. He left his wife in 1980, the attorney added.

Jocelyn Castillo somehow managed to enter the United States and settled in Ventura County with family members.

“He went to see her once, and he said that her family threatened him because he never petitioned (U.S. immigration authorities) to bring her over here,” Quinsaat said. “Another strange thing was that he never talked about wanting to bring his kids over here. That was not an urgent priority for him.”


Quinsaat said his office had been unable to locate Jocelyn Castillo to serve her with divorce papers.

“We don’t know where she’s at. When I talked to him two weeks ago, I told him that our next step was to put a legal notice in the paper announcing that she was being sued for divorce and had 30 days to respond,” Quinsaat said.

Although Quinsaat said that Castillo oftened mentioned his relationship with Bautista, he never talked about wanting to marry her after his divorce became final.

Harry Jones, manger of the Meadowbrook Apartments where Castillo lived with Bautista, said Wednesday that she had asked Castillo to move out about a week ago. If true, this may help explain why Castillo beat her.


“Some of the other Filipino tenants who know them said she asked him to move out. . . . I was told that he didn’t take it well,” Jones said.