CEDAR PARK — Cedar Park police have charged a man with murder after they say his wife’s remains were found in a burn pit on a ranch in Bastrop County.
Amanda Gordon, 30, had been reported missing since Dec. 12, according to jail records.
Officials earlier had charged Samuel Byrd, 32, with tampering with evidence with intent to impair a human corpse after investigators found blood in the couple’s home and a gun in a discarded bag.
Cedar Park Detective Larry Bond said investigators discovered skeletal remains in the ranch, which belongs to Byrd’s known associates, and were able to determine they belonged to Gordon by artifacts found with the body. at a burn pit.
“It is clear that measures wre taken to dispose of the evidence,” Bond said.
Bond would not say if officials have determined how Gordon died but he said there was an “act of violence” in Cedar Park.
Bond said Byrd did not tell police where to find his wife’s remains. He also did not say whether police think that other people were involved in the death of Gordon.
Bond also declined to say how police found Gordon’s remains. He also would not comment on a motive in Gordon’s death but said police had previously been called to the couple’s home because of arguments between Byrd and Gordon.
Gordon’s mother called police Dec. 12 to report she had not seen her daughter in three days. According to an affidavit released Tuesday, Byrd told his brother that he and Gordon had been doing drugs, and when he woke up, she was dead.
Byrd’s brother, who spoke with police, told them Byrd had a girlfriend who had Gordon’s car, the affidavit says.
When police found Byrd’s girlfriend, she told them he instructed her on Dec. 11 to buy cleaning supplies including bleach and ammonia, according to the affidavit. She also told police that Byrd asked her to hide a bag he had placed in Gordon’s car, the affidavit says.
Byrd’s girlfriend took police where she had thrown away the bag, and officers found a .45-caliber Springfield handgun, a spent shell casing, Gordon’s eyeglasses and her cellphone inside the bag, according to the affidavit.
Gordon’s mother told police that Gordon and Byrd had been together for eight to nine years and had two children, an 8-year-old girl and a 2-year-old boy. Gordon’s mother also said Byrd had been physically, verbally and emotionally abusive throughout the relationship, the affidavit says.
Gordon’s mother told investigators that her daughter never reported the abuse to law enforcement because Byrd threatened her, according to a petition for protection of a child filed Monday by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.
After he was arrested Friday, Byrd told an investigator he “was framed” and that the people who were framing him “won’t get away with it,” the petition says. He said he did not know where Gordon was.
The couple’s daughter told an investigator that “one night (her mother) was gone” and that her father never said anything about her whereabouts, the petition says.