GRAPHIC: Police find woman’s mutilated body surrounded by makeshift crosses, salt on Easter

WARNING: The details of this story are graphic. Police arrived at the apartment and found a gruesome scene, according to the prosecutor. (Source: WBTV)
Published: Apr. 13, 2023 at 1:58 PM EDT
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WARNING: The details of this story may be disturbing to some viewers.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV/Gray News) – A woman’s body was found mutilated at an apartment complex in North Carolina and surrounded by makeshift wooden crosses and salt, prosecutors said.

Laura Miller, 35, was found dead on Easter Sunday at the Stone Gate Apartments in east Charlotte.

Police said the apartments are not one of their “high crime” areas and are typically “fairly peaceful.”

The suspect, Miguel Gonzales-Rasalas, 36, faces three charges including first-degree murder, theft of a motor vehicle and destroying remains/concealing death.

Police believe Gonzales-Rasalas and Miller knew each other and that it was not a random act of violence. However, police are not describing it as a domestic disturbance, saying that Gonzales-Rasalas and Miller were “acquaintances.”

A prosecutor for Mecklenburg County said police responded to a 911 call made by the brother of the suspect, saying he found a dead female inside the apartment.

Police later located Gonzales-Rasalas driving Miller’s vehicle and arrested him.

Police arrived at the apartment and found a gruesome scene, according to the prosecutor.

Miller’s ankles were bound by a cable and there were multiple wires wrapped around her neck. She also suffered from a laceration starting at her neck and running to her belly button.

Miller also had extensive damage to her face and head “to the point it was unrecognizable,” the prosecutor told the judge. Police observed a broken table in the apartment and three crosses made from the pieces of the table surrounding Miller’s body, according to the prosecutor.

Miller also had burns on both inner thighs, and salt was poured around her and the room.

Human tissue was reportedly found “scattered” throughout the apartment and Miller’s tongue was found in the dining room, the prosecutor said.

Neighbors told WBTV there was blood on the floor outside of the apartment, and the prosecutor said that blood had seeped out the door and down to the floor below.

Gonzales-Rasalas received a court-appointed attorney on Tuesday but told the judge he would like to represent himself in upcoming court dates.

Gonzales-Rasalas is being held without bond. He has two upcoming court dates on April 19 and May 1.