MORGAN’S POINT RESORT — Residents of this rural Bell County hamlet were shocked Wednesday morning to learn of the possible murder-suicide of two members of the community.
The possible murder-suicide happened after 3 a.m. Wednesday at 13 Buttercup Loop, said Lt. Donnie Adams, spokesman for Bell County Sheriff’s Department.
Brian John Cecil, 41, reportedly made a phone call, and said he had just shot his girlfriend, who had been trying to stab him, Adams said. He didn’t give a name, address or other information.
The person Cecil called then called 911 and gave deputies Cecil’s cell phone number.
After looking up Cecil’s known addresses in the area, deputies went to the house on Buttercup Loop and found Cecil’s pickup truck a block away. They also smelled smoke. The Bell County SWAT team was called and forcefully entered the smoke-filled home.
Cecil and Tabitha Sazama, 41, were found dead of apparent gunshot wounds in the master bedroom, where a fire had been started. Sazama and Cecil both worked at the Temple Post Office, where she was a full-time rural carrier and he was a part-time city carrier.
The deputies could tell that Cecil had a single gunshot wound to his head, but they couldn’t immediately determine Sazama’s cause of death because of the burns on her body.
A pistol and knife were found near the bodies, Adams said.
Justice of the Peace G.W. Ivey ordered autopsies on the couple and sent their bodies to Southwest Institute of Forensic Science in Dallas.
Morgan’s Point Resort Fire Department arrived at the scene but the fire burned itself out once the house was opened up, Fire Chief Billy Richards said.
Morgan’s Point Resort Police Department knew the couple because they responded to several domestic disturbances involving them in the last two weeks, Adams said.
Officers arrested Cecil on Oct. 22 and charged him with criminal trespass and simple assault, said Chuck Cox, deputy chief for Bell County Sheriff’s Department. He bonded out Oct. 23 on a $5,000 bond.
Cecil was jailed on three separate occasions, according to Bell County misdemeanor reports.
Both Rachel Foraker and Delores Rosen, residents on Buttercup Loop, said the neighborhood is a quiet one. Foraker said she heard nothing, but her husband left the house at about 6:15 p.m. and saw a police-lined street. They didn’t know what happened until she heard news reports.
“I just knew her enough to smile and wave at her when she drove by. And I don’t remember ever seeing that man there,” Foraker said.
Rosen said the most exciting thing to happen in their neighborhood is the deer running across the lawn.
“It’s unsettling when people don’t get along together. He took the wrong way out,” she said.