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Highway 138 Death Suspected to be a Murder Suicide

ALISO VIEJO:( On Sunday, July 6, 2014, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s investigators initiated a death investigation in an unincorporated area on Hwy 138 east of Summit Valley Road near Hesperia. When they arrived on scene they discovered a vehicle on the side of the road with a deceased male at the vehicle.

50-year-old Philip Alexander Smyth, a resident of Aliso Viejo, was discovered deceased as a result of self-inflicted stab wounds. Smyth’s death has been determined by the San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner to have been a suicide.

San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Investigators identified a residence located at 23411 Summerfield in Aliso Viejo at the St. Moritz Apartments as possibly being related to Smyth.

On Monday, July 7, 2014, Orange County investigators executed a search warrant at the Summerfield address and discovered 49-year-old Brigitte Julie Shaw, deceased inside her residence. It is believed Shaw had been deceased for several days; the manner and cause of death is pending toxicology results.

Orange County Sheriff’s homicide investigators worked collaboratively with San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department investigators as it was determined there may be a connection between Shaw’s death and a death investigation in their jurisdiction.

Based on the preliminary investigation and information collected at both scenes, it appears Smyth and Shaw had a boyfriend-girlfriend relationship and resided at the Summerfield address. Evidence gathered from Orange and San Bernardino County has given investigators reason to believe the deaths are a result of murder-suicide with Smyth being the suspect.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Orange County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Unit at (714) 647-7055. Anonymous tips may also be submitted to Orange County Crime Stoppers at 855-TIP-OCCS (855-847-6227) or at

Orange County Sheriff’s investigators were notified by San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department following the discovery.

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