BAYTOWN, Texas - A Baytown, Texas woman fatally shot and then dismembered her boyfriend with a machete before leaving his remains in dumpsters of her apartment complex, court documents allege.
KTRK-TV reports, Cierra Alexis Sutton has been charged with murder in connection with the death of Steven Coleman, who was last seen on the evening of Aug. 16 in the 1700 block of James Bowie Drive.
According to investigators, Sutton admitted to others that she had shot Coleman in the head as he slept after an argument. Because his body was too heavy for her to carry, Sutton allegedly hacked it into smaller pieces with a machete and then disposed of the smaller pieces in various local dumpsters.
On Sunday, Coleman's close friend Dominique Clark spoke to Eyewitness News about Sutton's arrest.
"Devil. That's the mind of a bad spirit," Clark said. "That's not a normal mind. That's not a mind of God. That's not one of God's children."
On Aug. 22, a male torso was found in a Chambers County landfill that receives trash from dumpsters throughout Baytown and Pasadena. While the torso has yet to be definitively identified as Coleman's, investigators say some key physical characteristics do match.
Before the torso was found, Clark said Sutton stayed with Coleman's family as they looked for their missing loved one.
"She played the role of an innocent person," Clark said. "She played the role of an innocent person, and she played it to the fullest."
Coleman's credit cards were used at a Harris County Walmart after he went missing, according to investigators, and the woman caught on surveillance camera buying duct tape and a mattress pad with Coleman's card closely matched Sutton's description.
Witnesses reported seeing Sutton and other men moving furniture out of Coleman's apartment on Aug. 20; by the time investigators searched the apartment on Aug. 24, most of the furniture had been removed from the unit, but crime scene investigators did find blood in several rooms, including the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen. Investigators said they also found blood in Sutton's Jeep.
In an interview with detectives, one of Coleman's friends told detectives that Coleman "told her on numerous occasions if he was ever to go missing, she needed to make sure police looked into Sutton as the cause," according to court documents.
Woman allegedly shoots sleeping boyfriend, cuts up body
Investigators say they had attempted to interview Sutton about Coleman's disappearance, but she failed to show up for interviews. A third party tipped authorities off after Sutton allegedly spoke openly about the crime to others.
As Coleman's family and friends wait for justice, they can't help but think back on the man they lost.
"He was an original," Clark said. "He was a unique guy. One of those you walk in the room and you can't help but notice."
Now he's hoping the person who took his friend away will spend years behind bars.
"I thank God every day for even giving me the opportunity to experience a person like that," Clark said. "I will never meet a person like that ever again."
According to Baytown police, Sutton was taken into custody on Thursday in Louisiana.
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