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Manatee cops: Dead woman's boyfriend was wanted for earlier assault

MANATEE — The man who reported finding his girlfriend dead in their home Friday afternoon is being questioned after deputies found signs of violence. The sheriff's office had been looking for the man since March 5 after he allegedly assaulted the woman.

Jonathon Holte, 26, has not been charged in the death of Malenne Meranvil, 21.

Deputies found Meranvil, 21, dead from “trauma to the body which indicates foul play,” according to a sheriff’s report. Sheriff’s spokeman Dave Bristow declined to say how she died.

Bristow said at about noon Friday, Meranvil’s live-in boyfriend, Holte, called 911 saying he found his girlfriend dead in their home in the 2500 block of 55th Avenue West. Holte told detectives he had left the home at 1 a.m. and returned a little before noon and found her, Bristow said.

Detectives took Holte into custody on an outstanding traffic warrant and are questioning him about Meranvil’s death. He has not been charged in the death.

The sheriff's office is charging Holte with domestic battery for an incident that occurred March 5.

That day, Holten went to Meranvil's residence in the 700 block of 60th Avenue Terrace West and assaulted her by pulling her hair and pushing her down, according to a news release. When deputies arrived, Holte fled.

The victim didn’t want to press charges but the case was assigned to a domestic violence detective for follow-up. The detective has been actively looking for Holte and had probable cause for his arrest, according to the sheriff's office.

Anyone with information about this case can call the sheriff’s office at (941) 747-3011, or Crime Stoppers at (866) 634-TIPS.

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