Braulio M. Castillo
The Loudoun County Circuit Court has granted the Ashburn man accused of killing his estranged wife
in March a $2 million bond.
Braulio M. Castillo, 43, was granted a $2 million bond by Judge Burke McCahill. However, Castillo is still subject to electronic monitoring and supervision and may not leave the state. He was also required to surrender his passport and may not discuss the case with his children, who have been living with family friends since their mother’s death and father’s arrest.
Castillo’s bond was previously set at $1 million by the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, prompting an appeal from the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office. Though McCahill denied the appeal, he did increase the amount.
Castillo was arrested April 1 for the March 19 murder in which Michelle Castillo, 43, was beaten and then hung from the basement shower to give the appearance of suicide. Her body was found the following day when a neighbor called for a welfare check after the children couldn’t find their mother.
The Castillos have five children, including four under the age of 18.
At the time of the murder, the Castillos were in the midst of divorce proceedings, which had been ongoing since April 2013. Michelle Castillo filed for divorce, claiming her husbands behavior had escalated from not only emotionally and mentally abusive, but physically abusive. Eventually, she filed for an emergency protective order, which was granted and later made permanent.
The couple was scheduled for a court date the day of Michelle Castillo’s death, but the hearing was postponed.
In an earlier interview with the Times-Mirror, Michelle Castillo’s friend Patti Hidalgo said in a conversation just three weeks before her death, Michelle indicated she didn’t feel unsafe given the situation.
Braulio Castillo worked as a CEO for Strong Castle, a small IT company that came under scrutiny last year after accusations that Braulio used his friendship with an IRS official to get millions in federal contracts. He gained further notoriety in 2013, when he was chastised in Congress for using a foot injury from a military prep school to get Strong Castle designated a "service-disabled veteran-owned small business," helping grant his company preferential treatment for contracts.
Castillo will be back in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court May 15 for a preliminary hearing.