Man found guilty in 20 year old cold murder trial - KXXV-TV News Channel 25 - Central Texas News and Weather for Waco, Temple, Killeen |


Man found guilty in 20 year old cold murder trial


A man on trial for murdering an elderly Belton woman more than 20 years ago has been found guilty.

Samuel Edward Baker was found guilty of murdering 74 year-old Shellie Latham. Sentencing will begin for this case on August 20.

Both the prosecution and the defense made opening arguments Monday morning as the trial got underway. For the victim's family, the day was a long time coming.

Samuel Edward Baker was in a Bell County Courtroom and seemed unemotional as the state called three witnesses to the stand.  

Belton police say they were conducting a welfare check when they discovered Latham's body stabbed to death lying on the kitchen floor.

The witnesses included one of the initial responding officers and the victim's nephew who got choked up and fought back tears when he was asked about that fateful day on September 10th, 1989.

Baker was one of the original suspects but wasn't arrested and charged until August 2011 in Buda. New forensic evidence was found in 2009 that lead Belton police to reopen the cold case.

The judge ended the opening day of the trial after the defense cross-examined Latham's nephew. They questioned him about whether or not he gave officers a name of someone else who may have murdered his aunt.

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