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Suspect in Shocking Ladyville Double Murder Appears in Court

Apr 24, 2023

Suspect in Shocking Ladyville Double Murder Appears in Court

Miguel Encalada

Miguel Encalada, the Ladyville resident who is accused of the murder of his common-law-wife, fifty-year-old Desiree Gonzalez Rowland and his own brother, twenty-five-year-old George Encalada Rochester, appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court today to face the charges. The thirty-nine-year-old barber is charged with two counts of murder. While speculation is still rife that the motive behind the killings was the result of a love triangle gone wrong, the family is still holding its initial position: that the motive is unclear and the scene was staged to make it appear as if the two victims were romantically involved. They also hold the position that George Encalada Rochester was at his house early that morning when Miguel went for him. Meanwhile, the post mortem examination is complete. News Five’s Marion Ali has the update.

Marion Ali, Reporting

After four nights in police custody, Ladyville barber, thirty-nine-year-old Miguel Encalada was taken before a Belize City magistrate, where he was read two counts of murder upon his common-law wife, Desiree Gonzalez Rowland and his brother, George Encalada Rochester. Encalada, who was unrepresented in court, wore a pair of slippers and socks on his feet. Last Thursday afternoon, police took him into custody at his home after they discovered the crime scene and found him there. Commissioner of Police, Chester Williams shared with News Five last Friday that police were relying on statements from two of Encalada’s brothers who were at the home prior to the police arriving there on Thursday afternoon.

Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police (File: April 21st 2023)

“We can also be guided tremendously by the statement or the comments given by two brothers of the accused who visited the house prior to police getting there. And, apparently when they visited on separate occasions, the accused brother told them certain things as to what may have transpired between him and the duo. And so we are relying heavily on what those two persons have to say. It is more consistent with what we find on the crime scene.”

Desiree Gonzalez Rowland

The post mortem examinations, which were completed on both victims today, reportedly indicate that both Gonzalez Rowland and Encalada Rochester were shot in the head. Gonzalez’s sister, Cindy Rowland, told News Five at the crime scene that it is her belief that the scene was staged to make it appear that the two shooting victims were romantically involved. She believes, based on the bloodstains on the exterior of the house, that George Encalada Rochester was killed outside and then dragged inside through the bedroom window. And that is also based on reports that George Encalada Rochester was at his house on Perez Road when Miguel went for him in the wee hours of Thursday. This time is consistent with the commissioner’s suspicion that the killings also happened in the wee hours of Thursday.

George Encalada Rochester

Chester Williams

“We believe that those persons were killed between two and three a.m., in the morning or a little after three, because when the police got there in the afternoon rigor mortis was already setting in, which would have indicated that they would have been killed several hours prior.”

Marion Ali

“Was George Encalada really lured from his house at that hour in the morning, or was, as the sister…”

Chester Williams

“They are brothers. I don’t know how he got there. Certainly the investigation is going to reveal that.”

Williams indicated that the police will seek search warrants to access the cell phones of Miguel and George Encalada and that of Desiree Gonzalez Rowland to determine what type of communication they may have had among them prior to the incident. Clearly, several questions remain following the double homicide, including one that Cindy Rowland has raised: if both victims were shot in the head inside the residence, how did bloodstains get on the exterior of the window and the ground outside?

Cindy Rowland

Cindy Rowland, Sister of Deserie Gonzalez Rowland (File: April 21st 2023)

“We saw blood on the ground. And not only that, we saw blood where he was pulled through the window.”

Marion Ali

“Pulled back inside you’re saying?”

Cindy Rowland

“Pulled back inside the establishment through the window.”

As if the double murder was not shocking enough, the absurdity of Encalada taking a photo of himself at the scene of the crime, displaying the two corpses in the background casts an even more sinister scenario about what has transpired. Before leaving the courtroom, Encalada asked for permission to see his mother before being taken to prison, where he will remain in custody, as is stipulated under Section Sixteen of the Crime Control Criminal and Justice Act, for a crime of this nature. His next court date is June thirtieth.  Marion Ali for News Five.