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| Crime |

Appalachian Trail Serial Killer Linked to Missing Miami Woman

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Four years ago, a heavyset 26-year-old Miami woman named Rossana Miliani walked into a general store in Bryson City, North Carolina, with an older man whose hair was going gray.


The man told a clerk he was a preacher who traveled to campsites around the nearby Appalachian Trail. Miliani, who had taken a bus from South Florida to North Carolina that morning, looked nervous. The two bought a sleeping bag and walked out.

That was the last time anyone saw Miliani. Ever since then, her father, Miami resident Anibal Miliani, has been trying to figure out what happened to his daughter

But now, at last, he thinks he knows who the man was that bought the sleeping bag with her that day -- Gary Michael Hilton, who was recently sentenced to life in prison for raping and killing a hiker and is awaiting trial on charges of decapitating another woman.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports this morning that a sketch of the man who bought the sleeping bag with Miliani that morning -- based on the clerk's memory -- matches Hilton's appearance.

Miliani's father wants police to question Hilton about Rossana's disappearance. The killer is already linked to three other killings -- an elderly North Carolina couple who disappeared while hiking and a North Florida man whose decapitated remains were found in the Appalachian National Forest. 

So far, Hilton has refused to talk about any of those cases.

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