Evil Lives Here examines the case of Ariet Girgis, who was savagely murdered in her home in Westminster, California, in 2004. Her abusive husband, Magdi Girgis, orchestrated her murder.
September 2004, two men broke into the Girgis home where they found Ariet and her youngest son 17-year-old Ryan. After a struggle, one of the men bound up Ryan’s hands with a shoelace and shoved him into a closet.
Meanwhile, his mother was stabbed and slashed with such severity that she was nearly decapitated. Just months after Ariet had plucked up the courage to divorce her abusive husband, she was dead.
Detectives turned to Girgis immediately as he was already awaiting trial for allegedly punching Ariet in an argument over money. Police believed that Girgis, fearing he’d lose money and property in a divorce from his wife, arranged to have her killed. However, the case went cold due to a lack of evidence.
The case went cold until a DNA breakthrough
In 2011 there was a breakthrough when DNA evidence from the shoelace used to bound Ryan was matched to Anthony Edward Bridget.
An undercover cop approached Girgis in 2013, telling him he was a friend of Bridget and that he knew Girgis had arranged to have his wife murdered. The cop demanded $5000 in hush money, and when Girgis turned up to pay the amount, he was arrested.
Girgis’s son was afraid of his father
When Girgis was sentenced in 2014, his two sons urged the judge to hand their father the severest punishment that they could. Richard told his father that he forgave him and suggested he confess, however, he also claimed to be afraid of Girgis saying he slept with a gun under his pillow because of him.
Girgis, on the other hand, remained unrepentant when he told the judge, “you are about to sentence an innocent man, and God is my witness in that.” The judge disagreed with him and sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
In October 2018, Anthony Edward Bridget was also sentenced to life in prison for his role in the murder as one of the men Girgis had hired.
The third man, who did the actual killing, remains at large.
More from Evil Lives Here
Follow the links to read about more crimes profiled on Evil Lives Here. Edward Pehowic was drinking with 35-year-old single mother Carol Caswell when he drowned her in a lake in New Hampshire in 1996. He had cruelly abused and taunted her; e told her he wouldn’t kill her if she could swim to the other side of the lake.
The show recently looked at the case of William “Patrick” Alexander, a habitual offender from his teenage years, who killed his 17-year-old girlfriend, Jessica Witt, because he feared she was going to snitch on him for stealing her grandfather’s credit card.
Watch Evil Lives Here at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.