Melting Santa Suit Burned Killer, Foiled Getaway

Gunman found with costume fused to skin
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Dec 27, 2008 9:30 AM CST
Los Angeles coroner officials remove the body of Bruce Pardo Thursday, Dec. 25, 2008. Pardo is suspected of opening fire at a Christmas Eve party, leaving nine people dead.    (AP Photo/Gene Blevins)
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(Newser) – The California Santa killer, who committed suicide after massacring his ex-wife’s family, had planned an escape by plane—but he was foiled by third-degree burns as his Santa Claus suit melted onto his body, the Los Angeles Times reports. The explosion as he set fire to his ex-wife’s parents’ house left burns on his arms, and he never made it to the airport.

Instead, Bruce Pardo broke into his brother’s house and shot himself in the head, the AP reports. “Mr. Pardo was severely injured during that explosion" at the house, said an investigator. "He suffered third-degree burns on both arms and it also appears that the Santa Claus suit that he was wearing did melt onto his body.”