DiMaggio tortured Hannah Anderson's mom, brother before killing them: court documents

James Lee DiMaggio is shown in this photo released by the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. A coroner told NBC News on Wednesday that the suspected kidnapper of Hannah Anderson was shot at least five times when FBI found him in the wilderness. Reuters

James Lee DiMaggio tortured close family friend Christina Anderson and her eight-year-old son Ethan before killing them in his home and abducting her 16-year-old-daughter Hannah, according to court documents unsealed late Wednesday.

Warrants drawn up as investigators tried to track down DiMaggio and his captive contain new details of what police and firefighters discovered when they responded to a fire at DiMaggio’s log cabin home in Boulevard, Calif., on Aug. 4.

“DiMaggio tortured and killed his best friend's wife and … son. DiMaggio also shot and killed the family dog,” an application for a search warrant read. “After the double homicide, DiMaggio set the house on fire.”

“A third family member, sixteen-year-old Hannah Anderson, is also missing and believed to still be with DiMaggio. Hannah Anderson is believed to be in grave danger and being held against her will by DiMaggio.”

A telephonic search warrant detailed how close DiMaggio was to Hannah Anderson in particular.

It said that 40-year-old DiMaggio and Hannah Anderson exchanged 13 phone calls before she was picked up from cheerleading practice at Sweetwater High School at about 4 p.m. PT (7 p.m. ET) by someone who was unknown at that time.

Her cell phone was switched off at about this time. DiMaggio’s phone had also been turned off earlier that day.

Hannah Anderson is pictured in this undated handout photo courtesy of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. James Lee DiMaggio, 40, is wanted in the killing of Christina Anderson, 44, and 8-year-old Ethan, mother and brother of Hannah, all of whom were last seen last Saturday, the day before DiMaggio is suspected of setting his house on fire in the Southern California community of Boulevard. A national manhunt for fugitive DiMaggio, 40, focused on the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness after a group of backcountry horsemen reported to Idaho authorities that on August 7, 2013, they had encountered a pair they believed to be the suspect and 16-year-old Hannah. REUTERS/San Diego County Sheriff's Department/Handout (UNITED STATES - Tags: CRIME LAW OBITUARY) FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS Reuters

“It has been learned through interviews with Hanna [sic] Anderson's friend that DiMaggio took her on multiple day trips. The most recent one being to Malibu and Hollywood,” the warrant said.

This warrant described how firefighters were battling the blaze in the cabin when they noticed smoke coming from a detached garage. That led to the discovery of the body of 44-year-old Christina Anderson under a tarp.

Next to the body was “a crow bar and what appeared to be blood on the ground,” according to the warrant.

Ethan’s badly burned body was later found in DiMaggio’s home. It took days to identify.

Another search warrant said that officials thought DiMaggio’s sister Lora Robinson “is possibly aiding DiMaggio.”

According to phone records, Lora Robinson made an “unusually large volume of calls” to DiMaggio’s phone on Aug. 4. “Phone records indicate that Dimaggio, Anderson and Robinson has [sic] been communicating on mobile phones regularly,” this warrant said.

DiMaggio was killed and Hannah Anderson rescued on Saturday in Idaho during a shootout with police.

After receiving a tip from horseback riders who spotted a man and woman matching the descriptions of the people in a multi-statewide Amber Alert for the teen, U.S. marshals flew over the back country of Idaho and spotted a tent.


At that point, an FBI tactical team was called in and traversed the wilderness for two hours so that they would not spook DiMaggio, according to NBC San Diego.

Officials told NBC San Diego that they zeroed in on DiMaggio after they were sure Hannah Anderson was far enough away from him.

Agents reported that DiMaggio was armed and fired one shot.

The coroner in Boise said Wednesday that DiMaggio was killed by "multiple gunshot wounds" to the head and the chest.

A spokeswoman for the DiMaggio family told the Los Angeles Times that his body has been cremated.

Meanwhile Hannah Anderson apparently broke her silence on social media on Tuesday and offered new details about her ordeal — saying that her captor “deserved what he got” when he was shot to death.

Posts from what family and friends confirmed was Hannah Anderson’s account on the site answered hundreds of questions submitted from around the world.

The writer expressed hope that DiMaggio burns in hell.

NBC News' Ian Johnston contributed to this report.