- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 19, 2014

ELIZABETH, N.J. (AP) - The husband of a northern New Jersey woman who went missing last month has been charged with her murder.

Union County prosecutors announced the charges against 39-year-old Abayuba Rivas of Elizabeth on Wednesday, one day after the body of 32-year-old Karla Jose Villagra Garzon was found in a vacant home in Chatham Township.

Garzon, the mother of a 2-year-old child, was last seen on Feb. 23. Rivas said she had left their home that night to walk to a local pharmacy but never returned.

An autopsy conducted Wednesday by the county Medical Examiner’s Office determined that Garzon died of asphyxiation, with blunt-force trauma a contributing factor.

Rivas bail was set at $2 million, and it was not known if he has retained an attorney.

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