Conspiracy charge added against wife, alleged lover already charged in prominent hairdresser’s killing

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VAN NUYS >> The wife of a prominent hairdresser and her reputed lover — who are already charged with capital murder for her husband’s stabbing death at his Woodland Hills home — were charged Monday with conspiring to kill him.

Monica Sementilli, 45, and Robert Louis Baker, 55, pleaded not guilty before a Superior Court judge in Van Nuys to a felony count of conspiracy to commit a crime in connection with the Jan. 23 killing of Fabio Sementilli, 49.

The two were charged June 16 with murder, along with the special circumstance allegations of murder for financial gain and murder while lying in wait. Prosecutors have yet to decide whether to seek the death penalty against the pair.

The conspiracy charge included in the newest criminal complaint alleges that the defendants agreed to kill the victim and planned to obtain his life insurance proceeds.

The two “communicated via cell phones and encrypted communication applications regarding their plan to kill victim Fabio Sementilli” and Baker “solicited an unknown conspirator to assist him in killing victim Fabio Sementilli,” according to the criminal complaint.

Monica Sementilli forwarded an email about how to access her home video surveillance system to Baker, notified him that her husband would be alone on the afternoon of Jan. 23 and then left to go shopping to establish an alibi for the time of her husband’s killing, the criminal complaint alleges.

Baker and the “unknown co-conspirator” saw Sementilli sitting on the back patio and attacked him from behind, and Baker cut his own left index finger during the attack, the criminal complaint alleges.

Baker “went into the kitchen to wash off the victim’s blood and destroy evidence, leaving his own blood behind” and attempted to stage a robbery and burglary in the master bedroom, the criminal complaint alleges.

Monica Sementilli allegedly waited for her youngest daughter to arrive home to find her father’s body before returning to their home, and subsequently called a Los Angeles Police Department detective several times to inquire why her husband’s life insurance policy proceeds were being withheld.

The victim was pronounced dead Jan. 23 by paramedics who responded to his home in the 5000 block of Queen Victoria Road about 5 p.m. and found the Canadian-born stylist in a pool of blood in an outdoor patio area.

Homicide detectives determined that Sementilli had been stabbed several times in the neck and upper body. The victim’s black 2008 Porsche 911 Carrera, which had paper plates, was missing. It was allegedly parked by Baker on Califa Street in Woodland Hills four hours after the killing, according to the criminal complaint.


Police said investigators believe the defendants had been having an affair for about a year and a half, and she stood to gain a sizeable benefit — around $1.6 million — from a life insurance policy on her husband.

In June, Monica Sementilli’s attorney, Leonard Levine, told reporters his client “adamantly denies any involvement whatsoever in the murder of her husband, and we are hopeful that when all the facts come out she will be totally exonerated.”

Her husband was an established hairdresser who served as vice president of education for Wella, the salon professional division of Procter and Gamble, according to Salon Today magazine.

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