Silicon Valley man charged with killing woman found in yard

February 5, 2022 GMT

MILPITAS, Calif. (AP) — A Silicon Valley man has been charged with murder after police found a woman’s body buried in his backyard, authorities said.

Micah Dovlet, 34, of Milpitas was arrested on Wednesday and had a court hearing Thursday on a murder charge, a police statement said.

He remained jailed without bail Friday, according to a Santa Clara County website. It wasn’t immediately clear whether he had an attorney to speak for him.

Dovlet is accused of killing a neighbor, Tuyet Anh Phan, 59.

Officers had gone to the woman’s home on Monday to check on her welfare because she hadn’t been heard from for several days, police said.

They didn’t find anything suspicious but opened a missing persons investigation and found out that neighbors had heard a woman screaming in the area early Saturday morning, police said.

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On Tuesday, police said they found evidence of a violent crime near the woman’s home. They later detained Dovlet and found what appeared to be evidence of a killing at his home, police said.

On Thursday, the woman’s body was found in his backyard, police said.

The cause of her death wasn’t immediately released.

Phan worked nights at a McDonald’s across the street from City Hall and was a “good person,” neighbor Suong Ly told KNTV-TV.

Phan and Dovlet were not in a dating relationship, police Lt. Tyler Jamison told the San Jose Mercury News.

The paper said Dovlet was charged with murder in a complaint that said the victim was “particularly vulnerable” and the way the killing was carried out “indicates planning, sophistication or professionalism.”