A man charged in his girlfriend’s July death had his bond lowered Wednesday by Judge John Gauntt at a special hearing.

Matthew Stoddard, 22, of Copperas Cove, was charged with the murder of Angelica Santiago. Gauntt lowered Stoddard’s $1 million bond to $150,000. Stoddard was still in the Bell County Jail as of 5:15 p.m. Wednesday.

When police arrived at the apartment that Santiago and Stoddard lived in together on the day of the shooting, July 10, “early assertions” were that the gunshot wound Santiago died from was self-inflicted, according to the release.

Stoddard told police he was in the bathroom with Santiago when she grabbed a gun and shot herself, according to the affidavit.

Further investigation by the Bell County district attorney’s office led officials to believe a murder occurred, according to a news release.

The autopsy report showed Santiago suffered two gunshot wounds, and the death was ruled a homicide as early as last August.

Stoddard turned himself in to Harker Heights police on March 16.

254-501-7552 | sullivan@kdhnews.com

(1) comment

Gary Caraway

I wonder which judge set the outrageously high bond? I wonder why his name and political party was left out of this article? I wonder if local conservative lawyers are going to sue to get him removed? Do you see a difference in the way you report on JP C. Brown and anyone else?

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