A family of three had been missing from Angleton, Texas for at least four days when a man driving their car was arrested in nearby Rosenberg on Thursday.
Family members reported Maya Rivera, 24, Ray Shawn Hudson, 28, and their 5-year-old son Ray Shawn Jr. missing on June 10. The three of them did not show up to the local park where other friends and family had gathered to celebrate Ray Shawn Jr.'s fifth birthday, the Houston Chronicle reported.
Robert Allen Satterfield, 36, was charged with possession of a controlled substance on June 14, according to jail records.
Now he's also charged with three counts of murder , after police say he led them to the charred skeletal remains of three people in a private property in Whatron County over the weekend.
"The remains are at this point unidentifiable as there had been an attempt to dispose of the bodies by burning them," a representative with the Wharton County Sheriff's Office wrote in a news release. "It is believed these remains are those of Hudson, Rivera and the child."
Wharton County investigators told KHOU that Satterfield led deputies to the private property where the charred bones were hidden.
According to KTRK, Henry Floyd is the owner of the property where the skeletal remains were found. Satterfield and Floyd's daughter share a son, the station reported, and Floyd was letting Satterfield stay with him "until he saved enough money to get his own place."
Floyd told KTRK he made Satterfield leave Thursday, after the accused killer told him he was using a car "for a while" without explaining whose it was. It was later confirmed to have belonged to the missing family of three.
Family members of Ray Shawn Hudson Sr. told the station that he and Satterfield knew each other from a prior stint in prison.
"Word from the Texas Rangers yesterday confirmed the death of our loved ones," Maya Rivera's mother Frances Rivera wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday. "My heart hurts so deep."
Family and friends called Ray Shawn Jr. "Baby Ray," according to her post. He loved to do "anything his daddy did," developing an interest in trail riding at a young age and showing a happy affection for horses, Frances Rivera told the Chronicle.
Sheriff's deputies from Wharton and Fort Bend counties, as well as the Angleton Police Department and the Texas Rangers are working together on the investigation, according to the release.
Satterfield is being held on $305,000 combined bail for the initial drug charge and the three murder charges. Those charges could be escalated to capital murder when prosecutors are done going over the evidence in the case, the release states.