The search continued Tuesday for a man who police believe kidnapped two girls from their Round Rock home where their mother’s body was found Sunday.
Authorities are looking for Terry Allen Miles, 44, who police said abducted 14-year-old Lilianais Victoria Cake Griffith and 7-year-old Luluvioletta Bandera-Margaret. Their mother, 44-year-old Tonya Bates, was found dead at her home in the 2100 block of Leslie Court, police said.
Miles — Bates’ roommate — is a person of interest in her death, which is being investigated as suspicious, police said. He is possibly driving a gray 2017 Hyundai Accent with Texas license plate number JGH9845, authorities said. The hatchback vehicle has a white sticker in the upper right corner of the rear window.
Miles was charged in 2011 with second-degree attempted murder in the severe beating of his girlfriend but the case was closed, according to the Sulphur, La., Police Department on Tuesday. The Sulphur police chief, Lewis Coats, did not return a request for comment Tuesday.
Miles was also originally charged with murder in 2014 in the death of Pamela Parker in Sulphur, but a grand jury failed to indict him in the case, according to KXAN-TV.
Miles has been arrested and charged in numerous domestic violence cases in Calcasieu Parish, which is in southwestern Louisiana, KXAN reported. He was charged with domestic abuse battery in 2009, 2011 and 2014 and received sentences ranging from 90 days in jail to one year in prison.
Round Rock police said in a statement Tuesday they were “working diligently with state and federal law enforcement agencies to bring the two missing juveniles back safely.”
They released no further information about the case. Other details about Miles or his connection with Bates and her family remained unknown Tuesday.
Bates was a patient care technician at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center, according to a statement from Jeremy Barclay, the center’s chief executive officer.
“We are grieving the tragic loss of Tonya Bates, a member of our St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center family,” he said. “As a patient care technician at the hospital, Tonya spent her days caring for patients, and we will carry on her legacy by doing what she loved — caring for our community. We are keeping Tonya’s daughters in our thoughts and prayers, along with the law enforcement officers who are working diligently to bring them home safely.”
One of Bates’ friends said Tuesday that she was a loving mother.
“Her girls were her life,” said Crystal Unger. “They are amazing beings, so sweet, loving and generous. Tonya valued and nurtured their individual personalities in any way she could.”
Police are asking anyone with information to call 512-218-5515.
No new info in unrelated death
Round Rock police released no new information Tuesday about the suspicious death of 37-year-old Joshua Armstrong on Sunday.
Armstrong’s death is unrelated to the death of 44-year-old Tonya Bates, whose body was also found Sunday, officials said.
Officers responded Sunday to a home at the 1100 block of Preserve Place in Round Rock after a family member called for medical assistance about a possible suicide. When police entered the home, they determined Armstrong’s death was suspicious.
Armstrong’s father, Strain Armstrong, declined to comment Tuesday.