Local child sexual assault defendant skips court, commits suicide

Published: Jan. 21, 2020 at 10:47 AM CST
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McLennan County Sheriff’s deputies Tuesday were working to recover the body of Eric James Norwood, 36, who shot himself with a shotgun after missing a court appearance on an aggravated sexual assault of a child charge.

He was due to appear at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday in 19th State District Court, according to the court docket.

At least one helicopter was circling in the area of Coyote Trail just east of Lorena, Chief Deputy David Kilcrease said, but deputies had not been able to reach the man’s body.

Kilcrease said Norwood missed an appearance in district court on Tuesday where he was to appear on a charge of sexual assault of a child.

“When we got there the deputies witnessed him shoot himself,” Kilcrease said.

Kilcrease didn’t provide further details pending completion of the investigation into the suicide.

A similar incident occurred in November.

James D. Olson, Jr., 38, was scheduled to appear for a bond hearing at 8:30 a.m. Nov. 18, 2019 in 19th State District Court in Waco, but failed to show up.

Deputies tracked Olson through a court-ordered ankle monitor he was wearing to an apartment in the 1800 block of Majestic Drive in Hewitt where they found a note on a rear door that said to contact police.

They forced entry and found Olson dead and his 37-year-old wife, Shawn, injured, Hewitt police Chief Jim Devlin said.

Shawn Olson was taken to Baylor Scott & White Medical Center in Waco for treatment of her injuries, but on Nov. 22, 2019 she was arrested in Temple on a murder warrant.

She told investigators “that she used a straight razor and had cut the wrist area of (her husband) twice, causing the injury to his wrist,” an arrest warrant affidavit says.

“She cut him twice,” she told investigators, “due to the fat she missed the ‘artery’ in his wrist,” the affidavit says.

She was indicted earlier this month.

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