The ex-boyfriend of a missing North Carolina woman has been charged with killing her more than a year ago — and authorities say he admitted to impersonating the woman over text message to aid in his deception.
Brian Sluss was arrested and charged with the murder of Holly Springs resident Monica Moynan, 23, on Tuesday following a grand jury indictment, the Raleigh News & Observer reported. Moynan was last seen alive in April 2019 and has been officially missing since July 2019 when her family filed a missing persons report.
Authorities have been treating Moynan's disappearance as a death investigation since October 2019.
“These charges follow a long and in-depth investigation by the Holly Springs police department,” Holly Springs Police Department spokesman Mark Andrews told the News & Observer. “We came to a point where we could present the evidence before a grand jury.”
Sluss, 44 years old and the father of Moynan's two children, was previously identified as a person of interest in the case, according to previous reporting from local outlet WRAL.
Moynan's mother had previously suspected that Sluss had been impersonating her daughter in text messages — which Sluss allegedly admitted to doing, according to warrants obtained by local outlet WBTV last October. Moynan was declared missing after her mother requested a wellness check in July 2019.
According to warrants, Sluss had claimed Moynan was addicted to drugs and didn't know how to tell her mother she was missing.
Sluss also previously claimed he didn't report Moynan's disappearance because he expected her to come home, WBTV reported. However, he allegedly later gave multiple conflicting statements to police, including denying that Moynan was addicted, the News & Observer reported.
A search of Moynan's apartment turned up a positive pregnancy test, according to WRAL. Investigators wrote in the warrant application that, "we believe Monica being pregnant may have been a factor in the incidents that led up to Monica's death."
Previous warrants released in November said police found blood between cracks in kitchen tiles with “signs of cleanup" and the tested blood belonged to Moynan, according to the News & Observer.
Moynan's mother, a friend, and a coworker all told police that Sluss had been abusive to Moynan over the course of their relationship, according to WRAL. Moynan herself had previously filed a domestic violence protection order against Sluss.
Sluss was arrested in Tazewell County, Virginia and is being held in the county's jail while awaiting an extradition hearing, according to the News & Observer. It is unclear if he has an attorney able to comment on his behalf.
The whereabouts of Moynan's body remains unknown, police said.
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.