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SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE (CBSMiami) – A woman and her boyfriend appeared in court Thursday, accused of brutally murdering the woman’s own mother, then trying to cover up their crime.
Sasha Gonzalez, 29, stood before a judge at a bond hearing. She’s accused of killing her 70-year-old mother, Hilda.
“You’re being charged with first-degree murder and with tampering with physical evidence,” the judge said.
Police said her boyfriend, 30-year-old Yancel Castillo, helped.
“You’re being charged with accessory after the fact, tampering with physical evidence, and abusing a body,” said the judge.
“I’m going to find probable cause. No bond,” the judge said to Sasha. Yancel received $100,000 bond and house arrest.
The dead woman’s daughter and her boyfriend were arrested on Wednesday and charged with murder. A third suspect was questioned by police but has not been arrested.
Police were first called to the home on SW 224th Street and 127 Place on Tuesday for a welfare check but nobody answered the door.
A short time later, police say, Sasha Gonzalez came home and allowed police inside to look for her mother.
Once inside, the police report states, officers found “burned clothing in the front yard, apparent bones in a trash bin in the front of the residence, and a large charred area on the ground of the side of the yard.”
In video from Chopper 4 on Wednesday afternoon, investigators can be seen digging on the side of the home and placing items on a table.
The police report goes on to say, “officers observed the scent of Clorox cleaning product in the air within the residence, and observed open cleaning containers in the victim’s bedroom.”
While being interviewed by Miami-Dade Police Missing Persons detectives, Sasha “spontaneously stated that the victim (her mother) was hurting her and that she paid someone $50 to hurt the victim; however she did not know that the person would kill the victim.”
After her arrest, police say Sasha confessed her boyfriend’s brother, Santy Castillo, spent the night at the home on Friday, Oct. 12.
The police report says the next day, the victim got into an argument with all three of them, because Santy wouldn’t leave the house.
On Sunday, Oct 14, police say Sasha removed the doorknob from her mother’s locked bedroom door so she and Santy could suffocate her by putting a large black trash bag over her head.
The next morning, Sasha said Yancel and his brother put the body on a pile of tree branches on the side of the house and set it on fire, according to the report. The remains were then put into county trash bin.
Yancel told police he also removed a bloodstained mattress from the bedroom in order to destroy it outside but Sasha stopped him and said she was going to clean it instead. He also admitted, according to police, to helping his brother gather the tree branches, which were stacked on top of the victim’s body and set on fire. Police say he also stated his girlfriend’s clothes and shoes had bloodstains and witnessed her using a mop and cleaning products to clean blood in the mother’s bedroom and bathroom.
At the house on Wednesday, detectives were seen transporting numerous evidence bags out of the home.
Neighbor Naidyt Hernandez told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that Yancel Castillo has been acting strangely on Tuesday morning.
“The guy was running around erratically around 6 a.m. on Tuesday,” she said. “He was acting like a lunatic and he ran up to a landscaper’s car and started pounding on it and asking for him to stop.”
“I saw police out at the home for quite some time, actually starting just after 1 p.m. on Tuesday,” she said. “We are all very close in this neighborhood and I have to say that this is crazy. It is shocking. You don’t expect someone to be able to do that. It’s horrifying.”
“They have lived there for at least five years and there has never been any trouble there before,” she said. “They were normally very quiet and there were never any problems. This is really crazy because this is such a calm neighborhood.”
Another neighbor, Miranda Reinike, said, “I am kind of scared. Nothing like this has happened here before. I just came home and I saw cop cars and crime scene investigators and their vans. This was very scary. I just want to know what happened. I have lived here for more than 10 years. I grew up in this house. And to have this happening across the street, this is very scary.”
Sasha Gonzalez is charged with First Degree Murder and Tampering with Physical Evidence. She is being held without bond. Yancel Castillo is charged with Accessory After the Fact, Tampering with Physical Evidence and Abuse of a Dead Body.
Santy Castillo was interviewed by investigators but has not been arrested, according to police.