On January 23, 2017, a 49-year-old renowned stylist and hairdresser was brutally murdered in his own home, in a horrific turn of events that left the entire community of Woodlands Hills, California, shook. ‘48 Hours: Who Killed Fabio’ gives us a detailed insight into the unsettling case of Fabio Sementilli’s murder and how, through a long and arduous investigation, the police were able to finally zero in on suspects. Intrigued to know more about this shocking case and the alleged perpetrators? Here is what we found out.
How Did Fabio Sementilli Die?
Fabio Sementilli, also called “Big Daddy” by his friends, was a well-known stylist and hairdresser. He married his second wife, Monica Crescentini, in 1997 and the couple lived together in Toronto before Fabio was promoted to the Vice-President of Education for the beauty giant, Wella. The couple then moved to Los Angeles together with their two daughters, Gessica and Isabella, to a house in Woodlands Hills, California. Fabio and Monica were known to be head over heels for each other by their friends and family; they were believed to have the perfect marriage and life.
Thus, it was a dark day indeed when his youngest daughter, Isabella, found him dead on the patio of their home on January 23, 2017. Sementelli had been beaten and there were stab marks all over his upper body and face. Detectives also found foreign blood at the crime scene which did not match either of the Sementellis or anyone else being suspected at that time. Due to lack of evidence and the murder scene looking like a break-in, the police suspected the “knock-knock” burglars, before a breakthrough in the form of a DNA forensic report turned the case on its head.
Who Killed Fabio Sementilli?
Fabio’s wife, Monica Sementelli, is alleged to have helped her clandestine lover, Robert Louis Baker, kill Fabio Sementilli. We already know that the couple was living in luxury in the upscale LA neighborhood, and Fabio kept passing one milestone after the other in his profession. However, it seemed to profoundly impact their marriage. They suspected that Monica was having an affair with Baker for about 18 months before the murder of Fabio and alleged that Monica was the mastermind behind the whole plot.
On the day of the murder, investigators found CCTV footage (from a neighbor) which showed two unidentified men, hiding their faces with their hoodies, entering the Sementelli house at around 4:15 P.M. 35 minutes later, they were seen speeding away in Fabio’s Porsche, which was later impounded by police a few miles from his home. Initial suspicion fell on the “knock-knock” burglars, who were a group of home-invaders known for breaking into upscale LA house.
Yet, detectives weren’t convinced as murder did not fit the modus operandi of the burglars. Furthermore, when investigators tried to retrieve the footage from Fabio’s own CCTV cameras, they found that the whole recording equipment, along with the tapes, was missing, which pointed towards a planned crime. For days, the detectives were left in the dust, until Fabio’s relatives and friends attended a family memorial. Robert Baker was present at that memorial and was introduced as a friend of Monica’s whom she had met at the gym.
People grew suspicious of the unknown man at the gathering and someone clicked a picture and sent it to the investigating officers. It was around this time that the police caught a break in the case when they found Robert already in their database as a registered sex-offender. The unidentified blood found at the crime scene also matched Robert’s DNA. Armed with this evidence, the police arrested Robert Louis Baker and Monica Sementilli soon after. They were charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder together.
Where are Monica Sementilli and Robert Louis Baker Now?
Both Monica and Robert pleaded not guilty to the charges they were arrested against. Once on trial, the prosecution brought out evidence showing how Monica was with Robert just days after the murder of her husband. The prosecution claimed that the motive for the murder was to retrieve the $1.6 million insurance policy that Fabio had on his life. Allegedly, Monica Sementilli had called the police time and again to know why the life insurance money was being withheld. Based on the evidence, a grand jury indicted Monica and Robert, alleging that the duo had committed first-degree murder.
The indictment claimed that the two communicated via cell phones and other encrypted communications methods regarding their plan of action. It alleged that Monica’s alibi of going shopping at the time of the murder was staged and that she was the one who notified Robert about her husband being alone before stepping out to secure an alibi for herself. The duo was also accused of roping in a third, yet unknown, conspirator to help them in their murder plot. As of today, the duo is still in pre-trial custody in the California City Correctional Facility, awaiting their day in court. They will remain innocent until proven guilty, as is their right.
Read More: Where are Fabio Sementilli’s Daughters Now?