Florida Woman Allegedly Murders Roommate, Pours Soda On Herself To Destroy Evidence

Nichole Maks, 35, allegedly murdered her 79-year-old roommate at the Daytona Beach home they shared and tried to cover up the evidence by pouring Diet Mountain Dew on herself.

August 18, 2023
Nichole Maks, 35, pictured here, was charged with the first-degree murder of her roommate, Michael Cerasoli.

Nichole Maks, 35, allegedly murdered her 79-year-old roommate at the Daytona Beach home they shared and tried to cover up the evidence by pouring Diet Mountain Dew on herself.

Photo by: Volusia County Jail

Volusia County Jail

When Nichole Maks, 35, was accused of killing her roommate and was told that police officers were going to take her DNA, she asked for a drink. They gave her a Diet Mountain Dew that she then allegedly poured on herself in an apparent attempt to wash the victim’s blood off her leg before they could take her DNA, reported Local 10 News. That attempt to hide evidence didn’t work.

Back on July 1, 2023, police and firefighters were called to the Daytona Beach residence of 79-year-old Michael Cerasoli, and they found him dead in the home he shared with Maks. He had multiple stab wounds to his chest, and he had blunt force trauma to the head. He was pronounced dead at the scene, according to ABC 7.

The area where his body was found had been lit on fire. PEOPLE reported that police found a bloody knife and two phones near Cerasoli’s body. One of those phones belonged to Maks. They also found blood in a room where Maks stayed.

Police were able to track Maks down early the next morning in Holly Hill, Florida. When they stopped her, she had a knife and a hammer in her possession, and she had blood on her clothes and legs. ABC7 shared that her shirt appeared to be torn or cut, too.

Maks said she was homeless before ultimately admitting to living with Cerasoli. However, she said that her roommate lived upstairs and explained that she only went upstairs to feed her spiders.

According to a police affidavit acquired by E! News, while officers questioned Maks about her whereabouts during the murder, they told her they’d need to take samples of her DNA. That’s when she asked for a soda.

The affidavit stated, "Officer V. Pittman provided a diet Mountain Dew. Maks began to procrastinate while drinking the soft drink then when Detective J. Wallace attempted to grab the can of soda from Maks' hands, Maks began to resist and began pouring the can of soda all over her body and hair and pulling away from officers in attempts to interfere with the possible evidence on Maks' body."

Ultimately, Maks’ DNA was found on the handle of the knife found next to Cerasoli’s body.

ABC 7 reported that Maks is being charged with first-degree murder, resisting arrest with violence, and tampering with evidence. She is being held at the Volusia County Jail without bond.

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