A Texas woman, who told friends she was “going to blackmail” her boyfriend after she became aware he was married and using a fake name, was found dead in a shallow grave on Wednesday. According to WFAA, the location Kayla Kelley’s body was discovered wasn’t far from the residence of the man suspected of kidnapping her.
The suspect, identified as 32-year-old Ocastor Ferguson, has since been arrested and charged with murder, kidnapping and arson. “We believe the person responsible for her death is in custody,” Sheriff Jim Skinner told the news outlet.
Ferguson’s arrest affidavit stated that he and Kelley had been dating since last summer, adding that the two met online. But Ferguson was said to be using a fake name while he was dating the victim. The affidavit also stated that Ferguson told investigators he used to meet Kelley at her residence and other places. The suspect also said Kelley never came to his Grand Prairie home.
The affidavit added that Kelley informed her friends “she was going to blackmail ‘Kevin,'” after she became aware he was married and also using a fake name. Investigators also reviewed Ferguson’s phone and found text messages he exchanged with Kelley. The affidavit stated that Kelley told Ferguson she was going to notify his wife about their affair if he did not respond to her.
Ferguson’s wife told investigators that an unknown person sent her a text message on January 4, the affidavit stated, adding that though the person said there was something that needed to be talked about, the suspect’s wife did not text back.
In the wake of Kelley’s disappearance, authorities found her vehicle on a county road on January 12. The affidavit stated that the victim’s car was “burned beyond recognition and the incident was not consistent with a natural fire.”
Authorities also ran a background check on Ferguson and established the married couple’s vehicle had been reported stolen by his wife, WFAA reported. The affidavit stated that Ferguson’s vehicle was found not too far from Kelley’s Collin County residence. Investigators also searched the vehicle and found gloves, duct tape, and a blanket.
The suspect informed investigators that Kelley was supposed to bring him lunch on January 13, but she did not come around, per the affidavit. Ferguson also claimed his car was close to Kelley’s residence “because he was hiding it from his wife.”
The affidavit stated that though Ferguson went to work on January 10, he returned to his residence before driving to a location close to Kelley’s residence. He also made his way to the location where Kelley’s burned vehicle was found before returning home again, the affidavit added.
But during a conversation with investigators, Ferguson claimed he had not gone to the location where the victim’s car was found, the affidavit stated, adding that the suspect also claimed he did not know what had occurred. Ferguson also claimed he was driving around that time and the victim was in the passenger seat, the affidavit stated. The suspect also claimed that was all he knew.
“There is reason to believe that Ocastor Ferguson did then and there intentionally and knowingly abduct Kayla Kelley,” the affidavit stated.
Ferguson is being held on a $1 million bond.