A New Jersey appellate court has upheld the murder conviction of a man who said God told him to kill and dismember his grandmother and his ex-girlfriend.

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In the ruling made public Monday, the appellate court affirmed the trial court judge's decision that Rosario "Russell" Miraglia was competent to stand trial,

The 40-year-old Miraglia is serving two consecutive life terms for the June 2004 slayings of 88-year-old Julia Miraglia and 31-year-old Leigh Martinez. Both women were decapitated and had their hands and feet severed.

Miraglia had testified that he was carrying out an order from God by killing his grandmother. During his trial, he said he was driving from Newark to Asbury Park, listening to religious tapes, when "a revelation came to me."

 

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