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Denton County man jailed in killing, dismemberment

A Denton County man was in a Dallas County jail Wednesday, facing charges in the killing and dismemberment of a Dallas man.

Detectives suspect that Seth Lawton Winder, 29, killed Richard Hernandez, 38, who was reported missing on Friday, according to police reports.

A search warrant affidavit said there was a relationship between the two men.

Police on Friday went to Hernandez's apartment in the 3900 block of Rosemeade Parkway in far north Dallas after he didn't show up at work and his co-workers became concerned about him.

Officers and an apartment manager entered the apartment, which was splattered with blood.

"The entire floor of the living room was covered with large amounts of blood," according to the arrest warrant affidavit. "The walls of the living room were covered with blood and blood splatter.

"The sofa couch of the living room was soaked with blood. The bathtub appeared to have been used to dismember the victim's body."

Hernandez's remains had not been located as of Wednesday, said Senior Cpl. Janice Crowther, police spokeswoman.

Winder became a suspect after he was observed using a debit card belonging to Hernandez, she said. The card was used Sept. 4 at a Starbucks and a Target store, both in Plano, the affidavit said.

The Target store transaction was caught on video surveillance; detectives showed the tape to the apartment manager who identified the man as Winder, a former resident.

Detectives on Saturday got a warrant for Winder and subsequently learned from police in Carrollton that he had been staying at a wooded area in their city where they found a blood-stained backpack containing items that belonged to Hernandez, according to the affidavit.

Winder, however, wasn't at the wooded area when police arrived.

Detectives subsequently contacted Winder's father, a resident of The Colony. The father said his son was homeless, but he gave him a blue tent for shelter. He said his son stored some things in his garage and he gave permission for detectives to take a look.

They found a digital camera belonging to Hernandez which "depicted pornographic images of the suspect inside the (Hernandez's) apartment," the affidavit stated.

Dallas detectives also learned Winder had been camping on land belonging to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in The Colony, according to the affidavit.

Officers from both agencies went there and found the blue tent, which Winder's father confirmed was the one he gave to his son. The suspect was not there, but officers searched the tent.

"Detectives discovered a sword and other items taken from (Hernandez's) apartment with large amounts of blood on them," the affidavit stated.

Officers located Winder Monday walking along Interstate 35E near the intersection of Hebron Parkway, Crowther said. He was arrested for credit card abuse, Crowther said.

But because Hernandez's apartment was in the Denton County portion of Dallas, prosecutors there have filed a capital murder case.

Winder was also being held for violating an earlier probation, according to jail records.

Total bonds amounted to $760,504, the jail records state.