Fiancee charged as accessory in O.C. double murder, dismemberment

A woman has been charged as an accessory in a case in which her fiance, a community theater actor, has been charged with double murder in the shooting deaths of a man whose body was dismembered and a woman who was left to look like a sexual assault victim.

Rachel Mae Buffett, now 25, faces three felony counts of being an after-the-fact accessory to the crime and is set to be arraigned Friday, the Orange County district attorney's office said in a statement released Thursday. She is being held on $100,000 bail.

If convicted, she could face a maximum sentence of three years and eight months in prison, authorities said. 

Buffett was engaged to marry Daniel Patrick Wozniak, then 28, on May 28, 2010. But prosecutors said that one week before their wedding date -- on May 21 -- Wozniak killed his neighbor, Samuel Herr, 26, to steal Herr's substantial savings. 

On the afternoon of May 21, prosecutors said, Wozniak drove Herr to the theater facility at the Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Center, where Wozniak had acted in plays.

Once inside, according to prosecutors, Wozniak shot Herr twice in the head, leaving his body in the theater and taking his ATM card, wallet and cellphone. 

Later that day, Wozniak allegedly used Herr's cellphone to send text messages to 23-year-old Juri Kibuishi, pretending to be Herr and arranging for Kibuishi to go to the man's Costa Mesa apartment. Herr and Kibuishi were both students at Orange Coast College.

Kibuishi arrived shortly after midnight and was shot twice in the head by Wozniak, according to prosecutors. Wozniak then partially removed her clothing to make it appear as though she had been sexually assaulted, prosecutors said.

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This story was reported by Times Staff Writer Rick Rojas.

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