Following the murder of a pregnant woman in Texas, her estranged husband Matthew Sowders, 28, was arrested and charged with her murder and that of her unborn child.
Sowders, from Harris County, was arrested after a team of divers recovered the body of Melissa Sowders, 26, from Cypress Creek, which is situated just behind his house.
Melissa was reported missing on December 26 after she had been seen eating McDonald’s.
At the probable cause hearing yesterday, a court official addressed Sowders, telling him: “You’re here on a charge of capital murder, and I believe it involves the murder of two people, including an unborn child.”
The court documentation noted that a witness had told detectives that she had visited Sowders’ apartment on the day that Melissa went missing. When Matthew Sowders opened the front door, she said, she could see a woman’s feet and lower legs on the floor.
As of this time, Matthew Sowders is being held without bond in the Harris County jail and if convicted of the double murder, could face the death penalty according to state law. His lawyer, Dustan Neyland, is yet to enter a plea for his client but asserts his complete innocence:
“He is maintaining his innocence. It was a shock to be charged and arrested without a cause of death determination. He is not guilty of this charge,” he said.
Melissa and Matthew had three children. She was pregnant with her fourth child when she was killed. The unborn child was said to have been that of her boyfriend, Jason Sanford.
The circumstances were which led to the murder of Melissa Sowders are still unclear. The attorneys on both sides are preparing themselves for the upcoming trial. As mentioned, if convicted, Matthew Souders could receive the death penalty for the charges against him.