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Man arrested in slaying of woman found at home with her head bashed in, surrounded by crosses, tongue removed

Miguel Gonzalez Rosales (Mecklenburg County Detention Center)

Miguel Gonzalez Rosales (Mecklenburg County Detention Center)

A man in North Carolina has been arrested and charged with the disturbingly gruesome slaying of a woman who was killed and partially dismembered, with pieces of her remains being “scattered” throughout her apartment.

Miguel Gonzales Rosales, 36, was taken into custody and charged with first-degree murder, theft of a motor vehicle, and destruction of remains in the death of 35-year-old Laura Miller, authorities announced.

According to a pair of press releases from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, detectives with the department’s homicide unit responded on Easter Sunday to a call regarding the body of a deceased female at a residence located near the 900 block of Southwood Oaks Lane.

Upon arriving at the scene, officers found the victim inside an apartment. She was pronounced dead shortly thereafter.

“As a result of their initial investigation, officers identified a suspect, Miguel Gonzalez Rosales, and issued a Be on the Lookout (BOLO) bulletin,” the release states. “A short time later, officers located the suspect and initiated a traffic stop. Mr. Rosales was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Law Enforcement Center (LEC) in Uptown to speak with homicide detectives.”

Following the interview, Rosales — who was allegedly driving a car registered to Miller when he was pulled over — was taken into custody and charged with Miller’s murder.

Rosales appeared in court for the first time on Tuesday, where prosecutors with the Mecklenburg County District Attorney’s Office revealed graphic and disturbing new details about the crime scene.

According to a report from Charlotte CBS affiliate WBTV, investigators say that three crosses were found surrounding Miller’s body. The crosses were made from the pieces of a table that had been broken inside her apartment.

Her body had also been encircled with salt, with more salt found poured around the room where her body was discovered.

Miller’s body had been desecrated in other ways as well, per the report.

Both of her ankles were reportedly tied together using a cable, and several wires were found around her neck. She apparently had a deep cut running from her neck to her navel. Both of Miller’s inner thighs reportedly showed signs of being burned.

Miller’s face and head had been beaten “to the point it was unrecognizable,” the prosector said during Tuesday’s hearing, according to WBTV.

In addition, her tongue had reportedly been cut out and placed on her dining room table.

Investigators said they had found human tissue “scattered” throughout Miller’s home, according to the report, and added that there was so much blood at the scene that it had seeped out of Miller’s front door and was visible to her neighbors, even reaching the floor below hers.

At the end of the hearing, Judge Matthew Newton assigned Rosales a court-appointed public defender, but Rosales reportedly indicated that he wanted to represent himself. Judge Newton denied Rosales bond and scheduled his next court date for April 19.

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Jerry Lambe is a journalist at Law&Crime. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York Law School and previously worked in financial securities compliance and Civil Rights employment law.