Total of 5 now charged in Angelina County case in which man was found dead in truck

Total of 5 now charged in Angelina County case in which man was found dead in truck
Pictured are (top row from left) Linda Cook, Shawn Buckner, Leah Tudor, (bottom row from left) Kerry Welch, and Mykel Whitehead. (Source: Angelina County Jail)

ANGELINA COUNTY, Texas (KTRE) - Two more people have been charged in connection with a 2019 murder case in which a man was found dead in the back of a truck. All total, five people have been arrested in the case.

Leah Danielle Tudor, 31, and Kerry Ann Welch, 30, both of Huntington, were charged with first-degree felony murder and second-degree felony tampering with physical evidence with the intent to impair investigation.

Welch has also been charged with motion to adjudicate guilt for possession of a controlled substance between 4 and 200 grams and motion to adjudicate guilt for tampering with physical evidence.

The Angelina County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that Tudor and Welch were charged in connection with the death of 49-year-old Joseph Jerome Williams, who was found dead in the back of a truck on Guy York Road on Aug. 17, 2019.

A previous story stated that Linda Buckner Cook, 76, Shawn David Buckner, 54, and Mykel Whitehead, 29, all of Huntington, have also been charged with murder and tampering with physical evidence. 

The arrests follow Whitehead’s arrest in 2019. At the time, he was only charged with murder.

Angelina County Sheriff Greg Sanches said the four most recent arrests were the result of grand jury indictments. 

According to an arrest affidavit, Whitehead beat Williams unconscious before throwing him in the back of a truck. Several witnesses who were present at the time of the alleged incident were forced to cooperate.

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