Witnesses described for the court the 1994 discovery of John Sohus’ remains on the first full day of testimony at the Christian Gerhartsreiter murder trial.
Jose Perez Jr., who with his father dug nearly 9,000 pools in the San Gabriel Valley, was driving a Bobcat and digging about three feet below the surface when he struck something.
“We thought it was bags of garbage,” Perez, now a cement truck driver, recalled. “After my father dragged that bag off to the side, he pulled out one of the bags and started digging through it. He grabbed a piece of rebar and pulled out a skull. At that point we were all freaked out. He sat the skull down and called the cops.”
Joe Lucero, a former San Marino police officer, testified he was called to the scene because a human skeleton had been unearthed.
“San Marino is a very exclusive neighborhood,” he said. “Something like that just doesn’t happen.”
John Sohus’ mother, Didi, owned the property until she sold it in 1986.