Grand jury indicts Zavalla man for murder in connection to stabb - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Grand jury indicts Zavalla man for murder in connection to stabbing death

Tommy Granger (Source: Angelina County Jail) Tommy Granger (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Hector Garcia (Source: Angelina County Jail) Hector Garcia (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Antywine Oliphant (Source: Angelina County Jail) Antywine Oliphant (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Rebecca Cottle (Source: Angelina County Jail) Rebecca Cottle (Source: Angelina County Jail)
Source: KTRE Staff Source: KTRE Staff
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) -

An Angelina County grand jury indicted a 27-year-old Zavalla man in connection to the May stabbing death of Jesse Keller, 34.

Tommy Lee Granger was among the 66 people recently indicted by the Angelina County grand jury. He was indicted on a first-degree felony murder charge. His bail amount has been set at $100,000.

Captain Alton Lenderman said the stabbing took place on Keely Road in the Zavalla area.

Angelina County Sheriff Greg Sanches said Keller went into an area of homes commonly referred to as “the compound” and got into an argument with Granger, which led to a physical fight. Sanches said Granger admitted to stabbing Keller in the chest.

Hector Garcia, 28, of Lufkin, was also indicted. He was indicted on a first-degree felony burglary of a habitation with the intent to commit another felony charge and two felony sexual assault charges in connection to allegations that he broke into a home and sexually assaulted a woman.

According to Lt. Jerry Smith with the Lufkin Police Department, a Spanish-speaking LPD officer responded to a house on Paul Avenue at 10:30 p.m. on May 25. He spoke to a man at the home that said his wife had been sexually assaulted by another man. Smith said the man's wife was crying and hysterical.

The woman identified Garcia as the suspect. Smith said that after the husband left the home at about 6 p.m. that night, Garcia showed up at about 8 p.m. and forced his way inside the home.

"He started touching and kissing her, saying he liked her," Smith said.

Smith said that Garcia dragged the woman to a back room, took her clothes off, and sexually assaulted her even though she asked for him to stop. Later, the woman fled to the car and called her mother-in-law for help. While she was on the phone, Garcia was allegedly beating on the car window.

Smith said the victim started recording video on her cell phone as soon as Garcia walked in to the home. She captured the entire sexual assault on video, Smith said.

During an interview with the police, Garcia allegedly told police that he heard the woman asking him to stop and admitted to sexually assaulting her.

The grand jury also indicted Antywine Triall Oliphant, 36, of Diboll, on an aggravated sexual assault of a child charge in connection to allegations that he sexually assaulted a 10-year-old girl in January of 2005.

Oliphant was also arrested back in April on a number of unrelated charges that the grand jury hasn’t addressed. He was allegedly involved in a domestic disturbance in which he smashed in the back window of a vehicle driven by his wife and endangered their three children.

Collectively, Oliphant’s bail was set at $116,000.

Rebecca Cottle, 30, of Broaddus, was indicted for third-degree felony injury to a child in connection to allegations that she was hitting a 5-year-child as she was walking with him alongside U.S. Highway 69 in the Huntington area before she was arrested on June 26.

Robert Lee Faulkner, 21, of Lufkin, was indicted for online solicitation of a minor. He was arrested in an undercover sting operation back in May after he allegedly made arrangements to meet a 15-year-old girl for sex.

Sanches said the investigation began after Faulkner was identified as a suspect in a sexual assault of a child case under investigation in Sabine County.

Sabine County Sheriff Tom Maddox said that Faulkner had brought a 15-year-old girl to Sabine County to have sex with her. He had three sexual encounters with her that night then abandoned her, Maddux said.

Angelina County authorities set up the sting operation by making Faulkner think he was meeting a second 15-year-old girl.

Back in May, a Sabine County grand jury indicted Faulkner on three felony sexual assault of a child charges.

In addition, the grand jury indicted Kevin Blake Weldon, 48, on a felony injury to a child charge. Weldon was arrested in July of 2014 in connection to allegations that he grabbed his 13-year-old stepson and tried to strange him.

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