Trial begins for Texas man accused of killing roommate, leaving body in room for days

  • In US
  • 2023-02-06 18:08:19Z
  • By Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Jury selection began Monday in the murder trial of a White Settlement man accused of shooting to death his roommate in 2019 and then leaving the body in their apartment for several days before calling 911.

During an interview at the Tarrant County Jail in 2019, Jeffery Cory told WFAA-TV that the two had gotten into an argument when his roommate grabbed him and the two struggled.

Cory said he pulled out his handgun

"I shot him once in the face and he twisted to the ground and I heard a noise," Cory told WFAA-TV. "I popped him in the back of the head to make sure he was dead, so he wouldn't suffer."

The murder trial for the 44-year-old Cory is in the 213th District Court in Fort Worth.

Cory is accused in the shooting death of 43-year-old Erik Fernandez who he had known for about six years.

Cory admitted to WFAA-TV that he and Fernandez had had some disagreements as roommates in the past, and Fernandez had nagged him about his drinking and other behavior. He said Fernandez had at times threatened to kick him out of their shared apartment.

On the night of Feb. 27, 2019, Cory arrived home after a night of celebrating with friends because he had been hired at a new job. He told WFAA-TV he got into an argument with Fernandez that led to the shooting.

Fernandez died from gunshot wounds to his head and neck, according to a ruling by the Tarrant County medical examiner's office. His death was ruled a homicide.

Cory told WFAA-TV that he did not call 911 but instead dragged his friend's body into his bedroom and then drove to a nearby lake to get rid of his handgun. The next day, he went to work as if nothing had happened. He even took care of Fernandez's pets.

The White Settlement man didn't call 911 until the night of March 1, 2019.

White Settlement firefighters and paramedics discovered Fernandez's body in a White Settlement apartment. White Settlement is adjacent to Fort Worth on the west side of the city.

White Settlement police responded to a report of a deceased person shortly after 7 p.m. on March 1, 2019 in the 1200 block of Kimbrough St.

Cory called White Settlement police to report he had found his roommate dead in a bedroom.

Initially, Cory told White Settlement police he had not seen Fernandez or his vehicle for several days. On the night of March 1, 2019, Cory said he arrived home from work and noticed Fernandez's bedroom door closed and his dogs scratching at the door.

"Cory told officers he opened the door and found a deceased person and called 911," White Settlement police Sgt. Michelle LeNoir said in a 2019 news release.

Cory was arrested when he admitted to police that he had shot his roommate days before he called, LeNoir said.


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