Thursday, October 13, 2011

Bonney Lake, WA: Bonney Lake man says he killed girlfriend after argument over dirty dishes

BONNEY LAKE, Washington -- A Bonney Lake man accused of killing his girlfriend told police an argument over dishes led to the grisly crime, which occured in the couple's home where their children were, according to charging documents released Tuesday.

Mthulisi Ndlovu, 38, has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Mary Mushaipaidzi, 42.

Previously: Human remains found in home of missing Bonney Lake woman

According to charging documents, Ndlovu walked into Bonney Lake police headquarters at 11 a.m. on Sunday and said his girlfriend was missing. He told police she had left home to go running at 5:30 a.m. and hadn't returned. Police went with Ndlovu to the couple's home, a duplex, and noticed it smelled as though plastic had been burned. Ndlovu said he'd been burning junk mail on the garage floor.

Police spoke with the neighbor in the other half of the duplex; that neighbor reported hearing a loud banging from Ndlovu's unit at about 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, according to the documents. A second neighbor reported seeing Mushapaidzi's vehicle arrive home at about the same time. The neighbor said he heard yelling and what sounded like someone being beaten with a bat, but declined to call police because he said he didn't hear gunshots.

Ndlovu later confessed to investigators that he killed Musaipaidzi.

WARNING: Graphic details follow

Police entered Ndlovu's home after they obtained a search warrant and saw blood streaks on the stairway leading from the kitchen to the garage, according to the documents. Officers found a burn barrel containing burned human remains in the garage.

Police also found a pair of long-handled pruning shears, which they said had been purposefully separated. At least one of the handles had been used to strike the victim, who suffered head wounds which were consistent with blunt trauma.

Under questioning, Ndlovu told investigators that he and Mushaipaidzi had argued about dirty dishes late Saturday night, according to the documents. Ndlovu told investigators that she hit him in the face with her purse and he became enraged and knocked her to the floor. He said he climbed on top of her and punched her several times and that it was possible he tried to strangle her and hit her with the pruning shears but that he couldn't remember.

Ndlovu said that after he realized Mushaipaidzi was dead, he dragged her body into the garage and put her in a metal barrel, according to the documents. Later in the morning, he put charcoal in the barrel and lit it, in an effort to destroy the body.

(End graphic content) Arraignment scheduled for Tuesday

Ndlovu and Mushaipaidzi are natives of Zimbabwe. Ndlovu has no criminal history and there is no evidence of prior domestic violence with the couple, the Pierce County Prosecutor's Office says.

Ndlovu is scheduled to be arraigned at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

No comments: