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No bond set for murder suspect Marion Gales

Marion Gales, who is the community's best known career criminal, has been denied bond while awaiting trial on his latest and most serious charge to date: the murder of a homeless woman.

A judge refused to set a bond at a District Court Monday morning, which means 46-year-old Gales will remain in the Mecklenburg County jail for the time being.

He was arrested July 21 and charged with the April murder of Lacoya Monique Martin, 27, who was 16 weeks pregnant at the time of her death. Police investigators have said they have forensic evidence linking Gales to the case, but have denied to give further details.

A coroner's report suggests Martin was either strangled or smothered. She was 16 weeks pregnant at the time, and had both alcohol and cocaine in her system, said the report.

Both Gales and Martin were among the city's chronic homeless. Gales had admitted he knew the victim and had shared drugs with her, but denies killing her, according to his attorney, Terry Sherrill.

The case will next come before the court on Monday, Aug. 11, when a probably cause hearing is scheduled. However, Sherrill says prosecutors will likely bypass the hearing by going directly to the grand jury for an indictment, which was pass the case onto Superior Court.

Gales has been in and out of state prison four times since 1979, and is best remembered as a suspect in the 1990 murder of Kim Thomas, a community activities who was found slashed to death in her Charlotte home. Thomas' murder remains the city's most notorious unsolved homicide. Gales was never arrested or charged in the case, but Thomas' husband, Dr. Ed Friedland, filed a wrongful death suit against him in civil court and convinced a jury that Gales was the likely killer. Friedland won a symblic $8.6 million judgement against Gales in 1997.

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