A 49-year-old man pleaded guilty Friday to slaying his live-in girlfriend in 1994 and her two daughters and agreed to lead authorities to the bodies, prosecutors said.
Estanislao Prado Gonzalez of Downey pleaded guilty to three counts of murder in a deal that will save him from a possible death penalty. He will be sentenced to three consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole.
“This was a very difficult decision for my client,” said Gonzalez’s attorney, Deputy Public Defender Jennifer Friedman.
Though the location of the bodies is still under investigation, the court sealed a document Friday that contains their possible whereabouts and details of the crime, said Deputy Dist. Atty. Darrell Mavis.
Advances in DNA analysis linked the three missing people to blood found in their Downey apartment in 1994, and other evidence placed Gonzalez at the crime scene, Mavis said.
Mavis said Gonzalez and his live-in girlfriend Luz Maria Mucino, 37, had a stormy relationship.
Though the couple had been separated for three years, in November 1994 they moved into an apartment with Mucino’s two daughters, Edith Mucino Gonzalez, 18, and Gabriela Mucino Gonzalez, 17, and the couple’s 4-year-old twins.
Three or four days after moving in, Estanislao Gonzalez was seen moving out of the apartment with the twins, officials said. Luz Mucino and her older children were not seen or heard from again.
“We’re very glad to be able to resolve this case after almost 10 years of investigation,” Mavis said.