A private investigation into a whirlwind murder case is underway in Texas after Alfred White’s death, and one of the most troubling parts about the 28-year-old’s death is that his passing wasn’t originally ruled a homicide.
After White’s family heard that the autopsy results said he died of a drug overdose, they began to take matters into their own hands by ordering a private autopsy and hiring a private investigator, Chuck Foreman, ABC News wrote.
White disappeared on Nov. 9 after he called his wife and parents for help. His truck had broken down at a local grocery store, but he was breathing heavy and sounded frantic. When his parents got there, White was missing. Police called off the search after three days even though they had his wallet and keys so his family set out to find him. He was found face down in the woods naked, with an ear and two teeth missing and his throat and tongue slashed.
Foreman is claiming White’s death was indeed a homicide and authorities botched the investigation. The private investigator exclusively told ABC News that police didn’t properly investigate White’s disappearance and death.
"They have not interviewed the family, they have not searched the truck, they just didn't do the due diligence that you demand from law enforcement," Foreman said.
Not too surprisingly, officials at the Sabine County Sherriff's Office told ABC News that there wasn’t anyone available to comment on Foreman’s accusations. But Foreman remains adamant in his claim, revealing White’s body was found in an “unnatural” position.
Authorities said White, who was a personal trainer, had crystal meth in his system when he died, but his family believes he would never do drugs.
So why is there a supposed cover-up? White's mother, Rosalind, told the Daily Mail she thinks he was a targeted because of his race. “I think this is a hate crime. What they did to my boy, it hurts me so much to think of it.”
“There are some days I feel I might lose my mind, thinking what was done to him. But the fight keeps me going.”
But there's another twist to the case, and it involves a woman named Cindy Maddox. Apparently, White and Maddox knew each other through physical therapy work. Maddox denies the claim, and she also happens to be the adult daughter of the sheriff who worked the case. Foreman is currently looking into the possibility that the two knew each other.
Though the Daily Mail's headline suggests an affair occurred between Maddox and White, his wife told the news site she doesn’t believe her husband was cheating on her and even checked his phone records to find nothing out of the ordinary.
Though the initial autopsy ruled out homicide, the second suggested there was foul play involved since White sustained gruesome injuries. "When a person is found at 28 years old unclothed and in the woods, how can you not treat it as a criminal investigation?" Foreman said.
Dan Abrams, ABC News chief legal affairs anchor, explained that the case should have gone straight to state authorities. "What's troubling is how quickly the authorities, the sheriff, dismissed the idea that this was not a potential homicide, before the body was even found," Abrams said.
"Just because someone runs off and acts like he may have been on drugs doesn't mean you give up searching and assume there was no foul play."
For more facts on the case, check out 10 important updates here.
Follow me on Twitter @mariamzzarella