The teenage suspect in last week’s fatal shooting of a man whose body was found in a Kennedale church parking lot is also accused of having sex with a child at a Burleson home, police said Thursday.
The cases are unrelated, authorities said.
Cody Wayne Basinger, 18, of Burleson had become the focus of a sexual assault investigation by Burleson police days before the body of Dakota Birdwell, 18, was found about 7 a.m. Nov. 5 at Life Fellowship Church in Kennedale.
Basinger was arrested early Nov. 6 in Burleson in Birdwell’s slaying. While in the Tarrant County jail, Burleson police asked jail officials to put a hold on him in a case of aggravated sexual assault of a child.
Never miss a local story.
Police say the crime occurred during the summer but declined to release further information. “It’s still an active investigation,” officer Jae Berg, a Burleson police spokesman, said on Thursday.
Birdwell was shot once in the head, the Tarrant County medical examiner’s office reported. A bag containing what was believed to be methamphetamine was found in Birdwell’s pants pocket.
An arrest warrant affidavit gave this account:
While Kennedale police were at the church parking lot investigating the slaying, a 17-year-old who identified herself as Birdwell’s girlfriend ran up and told officers that her boyfriend was missing. She said Birdwell had left the previous night with a friend whom she knew only as Cody. She said Cody drove a red Mercury Cougar.
A neighbor of the church told police that he had heard a loud pop between 12:30 a.m. and 1 a.m. Nov. 5 and saw a small red car pull out of the parking lot. He thought the vehicle had backfired.
In a cellphone next to Birdwell’s body, Kennedale police found a phone number for Basinger and several incoming calls and text messages from Basinger’s phone talking about “Super 8” and “Motel 6.”
Kennedale police interviewed an 18-year-old friend of Birdwell who said that he, Birdwell and another friend drove to motels on the night of Nov. 4 to meet Basinger for a drug deal. Birdwell returned with four bags of methamphetamine and told the friends that he owed Basinger $85.
One of the friends said the substance in three of the bags was not meth. Birdwell called Basinger and told him that he was going to give back the fake meth but would keep the one with the real drug. The friend told police that Birdwell left alone to meet Basinger early on the morning of Nov. 5, but never returned.
Detectives later interviewed a friend of Basinger who said that Basinger had showed him a handgun just days before Birdwell was killed. And hours after Birdwell’s body was found, Basinger told a friend that Birdwell had deserved to die, according to the affidavit.
Basinger was in the Tarrant County Jail Thursday with bail set at $150,000.