Church Pastor Arrested In Murder-For-Hire Plot Against Daughter’s Boyfriend

A California church pastor was arrested Tuesday after allegedly paying a number of men to shoot his daughter’s boyfriend.

Detectives from the Riverside Police Department (RPD) served a warrant on March 13th for the arrest of Samuel Pasillas, 47, for his alleged role in an October 2023 murder-for-hire plot against a man romantically involved with his daughter, according to a press release from the department. Pasillas was alleged to have paid several men $40,000 to track and kill the unnamed victim, who said he was shot several times in his car in the Orangecrest neighborhood.

The victim said he was driving at around 7 pm when a car pulled up alongside him and opened gunfire, the RPD stated. Despite the multiple gunshot wounds, the victim was able to drive himself to the hospital and receive treatment for his injuries.

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Detectives later learned the man was romantically involved with the daughter of Pasillas, a pastor of a Spanish-speaking church in Victorville, the RPD said. Evidence was uncovered that allegedly shows Pasillas met with the men involved in the shooting and that they were allegedly paid to carry out surveillance on the victim for the two weeks leading up to the shooting. (RELATED: ‘Watch How Bad It Gets’: 50 Cent Says Los Angeles Is ‘Finished’ Over No-Bail Policies)

“We host services and people come in for special events,” Pastor Ron Folkner of Turning Point Church, where the church Pasillas was tied to held some of its services, told KTLA. “So, we have no idea who’s speaking or who’s singing. I have never heard the man’s name before, know nothing about him. It has nothing to do with our church.”

Pasillas was arrested and booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center for “solicitation for murder, conspiracy to commit murder, attempted murder, and assault with a deadly weapon,” the RPD stated. He’s being held on a $1 million bond.