MALIBU─The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office revealed on Tuesday, November 5 that Anthony Rauda, 43, was indicted for the fatal shooting of Tristan Beaudette, 35, and for attempting to kill 10 other people via a series of shootings that transpired over 2 years. A grand jury returned the superseding indictment against Rauda on October 21 for one count of murder, 10 counts of attempted murder and five counts of second-degree burglary. The indictment was unsealed on Tuesday.
Rauda pleaded not guilty to the charges and is expected to return to court for a pretrial hearing on December 5. Case BA476023, which contains the same charges, supersedes case LA089735.
Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Barnes of the Major Crimes Division is prosecuting the case. The defendant allegedly shot several unsuspecting campers and motorists starting in November 2016, where he is accused of wounding a man who was sleeping in a hammock at Malibu State Park region. A week later he allegedly shot into a vehicle.
Rauda is also accused of shooting into cars on three different occasions in 2017. No one was injured during the incidents. On June 18, 2018, he shot at a Tesla on Las Virgenes Road. On June 22, he is accused of killing Beaudette who was shot and killed while in a tent with his two daughters in Malibu Creek State Park. Beaudette’s kids were not injured during the incident.
Rauda was taken into custody on October 10, 2018, after officials with the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department conducted a detailed search for the suspect and evidence related to the crimes. The plan included a coordinated, comprehensive search of a vast area located in the heart of Malibu Canyon.
They observed fresh boot prints on the ground leading up to a steep ravine approximately a mile North of Mulholland highway and West of Las Virgenes Road. With the assistance of air support, detectives followed the boot prints approximately 50 yards. They heard movement amongst the brush, followed by observing a male adult, wearing black clothing, walking quickly, who resembled the suspect in the burglaries.
Air support confirmed the individual’s location, and it was discovered that he was armed with a rifle. Investigators contained the suspect in a heavy brush area and ordered him to drop the rifle and surrender. After a few tense moments of communicating with the suspect, Rauda opted to surrender and was taken into custody without incident
Lieutenant James Royal of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department filed a retaliation lawsuit against the LASD, for failure to issue a public-safety-warning at Malibu Creek State Park, before Beuadette’s death. The lawsuit was announced during a press conference on June 10, 2019.
According to court records, the victim’s family filed three lawsuits for damages against the LASD, California State Parks Police, and the State of California Parks and Recreation Commission on December 21, 2018. Each claim estimates around $30 million.
Lt. Royal’s lawsuit against LASD cites several complaints beginning in 2016, when he initially informed his superiors on several occasions to issue a public-safety warning to park visitors regarding the random shootings before the death of Tristan Beaudette, in which his fellow officers responded, “It was a state parks problem,” not theirs.
Royal lost his detective status and according to court documents, was forced to commute an additional 80 miles to work, which he believes is an act of retaliation from officers.
The lawsuit further indicated Royal was allegedly instructed during town hall meetings to only communicate LASD messages regarding the shooting death stating, ”There was no confirmed connection in the shootings,” despite his personal knowledge.
Canyon News reached out via phone to Deputy James Nagao at the Los Angeles Information Bureau. “The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is aware of the lawsuit filed on behalf of Lt. Royal based on the nature of pending litigation and ongoing investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment at the time,” said Nagao to Canyon News. “We remain committed to our responsibility of insuring the safety of the Los Angeles County residents,” Nagao added.
Rauda is also charged with several burglaries that occurred in the Calabasas region. If convicted as charged, the defendant faces a maximum sentence of more than 265 years to life in state prison.
The case remains under investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Written By Casey Jacobs and Sanestina Hunter