LIBERTY COUNTY, Texas - The sheriff’s office says a suspect has been charged with the murder of a man who was beaten and then dragged by a pickup truck in east Liberty County.
Robert Eugene Hoffpauir, 37, was arrested on Sunday evening and charged with the murder of 60-year old Roman Rodriguez.
Around 10 p.m. Saturday, firefighters and deputies responded to a burning pickup truck on CR 2741 just north of Rye. Authorities say the man was found dead behind his burned-out truck.
According to the investigation, Rodriguez arrived at the home of Hoffpauir and Hoffpauir’s mother, with whom Rodriguez formerly had a relationship.
The sheriff’s office says a domestic disturbance occurred, and Rodriguez was severely beaten by Hoffpauir during the altercation.
Authorities say Hoffpauir is accused of then tying a tow strap around Rodriguez’s waist and attaching the other end to Rodriguez’s pickup truck.
The sheriff’s office says it appears that Hoffpauir then dragged Rodriguez down the road for a lengthy distance, and then Hoffpauir set the truck on fire.
Authorities say an autopsy will determine if Rodriguez was dead before he was dragged by the truck or at some point later.
The sheriff’s office says they continue to investigate, along with the Texas Rangers, due to conflicting statements and to determine if additional charges will be filed.
Hoffpauir was placed in the Liberty County jail and charged with murder. His bond has been set at $1 million.