Convicted Sex Offender Michael Mele Gets 23 Years For Laura Garza’s Murder

GOSHEN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A convicted sex offender who admitted to suffocating a 25-year-old aspiring dancer from Texas has been sentenced to 23 years in prison.

WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman On The Story

In January, Michael Mele pleaded guilty to manslaughter and evidence tampering in the death of Laura Garza, who moved to Brooklyn to pursue her dreams.

In court on Tuesday, Garza’s mother and brother addressed Mele, calling him a coward and saying there was no forgiveness for what he did.

Mele apologized for “what happened.” Judge Michael DeRosa corrected him saying, “not for what happened, but for what you did.”

1010 WINS’ Terry Sheridan reports

Mele confessed to suffocating Garza in his Wallkill apartment in December 2008 after she became upset when she learned he had a girlfriend.

He said he put her body in a laundry basket, drove to Pennsylvania and dumped her remains in the woods.

Prosecutors said a surveillance camera captured Mele and Garza leaving the Marquee nightclub in Chelsea early on Dec. 3, 2008 and were last spotted near hiss apartment.

Mele quickly became the prime suspect in her disappearance and prosecutors said he refused to talk about Garza as he became the focus of the investigation.

He was quickly locked up on a parole violation. A body check revealed scratches on his back and a possible bite mark on his finger, prosecutors said.

During the investigation, police found patches of carpet had been cut away at Mele’s apartment. The evidence tampering charge alleges that Mele hid carpet fragments, a car mat and Garza’s body to prevent them from becoming trial evidence.

Garza’s skeletal remains were found near Scranton, Pennsylvania in April 2010.

Mele has had several sex-offense convictions in New York, most involving approaching women while masturbating. He was wanted in New Jersey for similar crimes.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Peep says:

    Good,

  2. Bman says:

    Wow 23 years!? Thats crazy, means he could be out in 8 years… Someone should hire someone in Jail to gang rape this guy!

    What injustice! Sux!

    Sorry for the family…

    1. Riker's C.O. says:

      Don’t worry, nobody has to be hired… Cons don’t like sex offenders…. They’ll just “like” him in a special way…

  3. Bullett says:

    Only 23 years, too bad it wasn’t 50 years!

  4. What Da!?! says:

    I’m supposeng DIANN’s got it allllll figured out!

    1. Yankee Fan says:

      This is a terrible story however your comment about DIANN was humorous

  5. Ed says:

    If Laura were my daughter, there is no way this guy would ever see the light of day again. I am sure this is not sitting well with the family. Horrible.

  6. Jenn says:

    This guy is going to get out when he’s 48. If you take a life, you should get life. WTF IS WRONG WITH OUR SYSTEM. At 48 he will still have plenty of life left to live, when this poor girl wont. DISGRACE.

    Oh.. and supposengly is not a word.

    1. Richie says:

      Actually, he’ll prob be out in 15 years with good behavior so he’ll be in his 30’s.

  7. Mikeybklyn says:

    23 Years ! Pathetic. Ifeel terrible for her family. Mom’s and Dad’s please do not send you’re kids to NYC. It’s Dangerous. You can also expect liberal justice. If this happened in any other state, he would at least be sentenced to life. Of course he deserves to hang-Mike in Florida.

    1. danny says:

      Right! Because the justice system in Fl is perfect. I mean look at how many years Casey Anthony will be locked away for! Don’t start talking smack about my home!

  8. DIANN says:

    THESE “GOLDIGGERS” ALL BETTER WAKE UP ! THIS LOOKING FOR MR. GOODBAR THING IS NOT WHAT LIFE IS ALL ABOUT. NO DISRESPECT INTENDED, BUT WHEN IT’S ALL SAID & DONE SHE WAS WITH A MAN SHE DID NOT KNOW & SUPPOSENGLY GOT UPSET WHEN SHE LEARNED SHE WAS NOT THE “NEW” LOVE OF HIS LIFE. WE DON’T KNOW SHE CAN’T SPEAK & TELL US WHAT REALLY HAPPENED, BUT SHE WAS THERE !

    1. CT Native says:

      For this she deserved to die? Your life is without mistakes that warrant death? C’mon!

    2. Yankee Fan says:

      DIANN

      With all due respect your comment borders on insanity

Comments are closed.

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