Missing Quinlan woman victim of homicide, say Royse City police

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Jul. 2—The Royse City Police Department has arrested a Houston man on a charge of murder in connection with the killing of a Quinlan woman at the American Inn Motel in Royse City in early May, according to Royse City police.

Reynaldo Chavez was being held Thursday on $1 million bond at the Rockwall County Detention Center and charged with murder as well as possession of a controlled substance, unlawfully carrying of a weapon and theft of a firearm, according to police.

Chavez is accused of murdering Sandra Denise Martinez, 47, of Quinlan, a mother of three.

The investigation started as a missing person report filed with the Greenville Police Department on April 29. Greenville police determined that the last place Martinez was seen was at the American Inn Motel in Royse City, according to Royse City police.

Video surveillance at the motel showed her entering the motel with Reynaldo Chavez on the evening of May 2. In the early morning hours of May 3, Chavez is seen on video coming out of a room, carrying what appears to be an unconscious female wrapped in a blanket and placing the body in the passenger seat of a car.

After the discovery that Martinez was last seen at the motel in Royse City, the Royse City Police Department and the Texas Rangers began a joint investigation into her disappearance, according to Royse City police.

On June 25, Chavez was arrested on unrelated charges by the Rockwall Police Department. Investigators with the Royse City Police Department and the Texas Rangers interviewed Chavez at the Rockwall County Detention Center.

During the interview, Chavez admitted to physically assaulting Martinez in the motel room in Royse City on May 2.

He stated that she died during the night. Chavez told investigators that he then drove to the Houston area with Martinez's body in his car and placed her body in a wooded area behind a business. The distance between Royse City and Houston is 265 miles.

The Houston Police Department was contacted and confirmed they had recovered a body of a deceased female from that location on May 9, but the Harris County Medical Examiner's Office had not been able to identify who the remains belonged to.

Royse City police provided recent medical records for Martinez to the Harris County Medical Examiner's Office, and they were able to positively identify her body. The Medical Examiner cited homicidal violence as the cause of death.

The death of Sandra Martinez remains under investigation and anyone with information regarding the circumstances of her disappearance and/or death is asked to contact Detective Andrew Mason with the Royse City Police Department at 972-636-9422.