CRIME
07/24/2014 02:30 pm ET | Updated Jul 24, 2014

Leah Cuevas Charged With Murder In Missing Mom's Slaying

A New York woman has been charged in the slaying of a mother of four whose partially dismembered body was discovered on Long Island earlier this month.

Leah Cuevas, 42, has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of 27-year-old Chinelle Thompson Browne, according to Long Island's News 12.

Browne reportedly lived in the same Brooklyn apartment building as Cuevas and was last seen alive on July 5. A family member reported that she was missing soon thereafter.

Gruesome discoveries began across Long Island days later on July 8, when police responded to a call about a partially dismembered body. Additional agencies became involved in the investigation as more body parts --including a left and right arm -- turned up in Hempstead.

Suffolk County police said that New York City officers broke up a confrontation between Cuevas and Browne on July 4. But the two women argued again inside Cuevas' apartment and a witness allegedly heard Browne scream, "No Lee [Leah], no Lee [Leah]," Newsday.com reported.

Investigators searched Cuevas' home on July 10 and identified blood spatter belonging to the alleged victim.

According to The Associated Press, Browne's husband said she worked in a Manhattan department store. He lives with the couple's four children in Guyana and had planned to reunite the family in New York.

Authorities haven't revealed a possible motive in Browne's slaying.

During her arrangement at First District Court in Central Islip Thursday, Cuevas entered a plea of not guilty to the second-degree murder charge.

Before remanding Cuevas to the Suffolk County Jail, Judge G. Ann Spelman reportedly described Browne's death and dismemberment as "the worst conduct that humans can be capable of."

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