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Man facing life in prison for sexual assault of a child dies by suicide

Posted at 10:29 AM, Jan 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-21 14:22:33-05

LORENA, TX — A 36-year-old man who was facing life in prison shot and killed himself Tuesday morning, just hours before jury selection.

Eric James Norwood was to be in court this week for allegations dating back to 2013, according to Norwood's attorney Gerald Villarrial.

Norwood was charged with one count of aggravated sexual assault of a child and a second county of indecency by conduct of a child.

According to Villarrial, the maximum sentence Norwood could have faced was life in prison without the ability of parole.

"Well the case is done because he was the defendant in the case and he's no longer with us--there's no one to charge," said Villarrial. "A criminal case results in someone being found guilty or not guilty and if they're guilty in this type of situation, they'd go to prison. Well there's no one to do that."

Chief Deputy David Kilcrease said deputies had not been able to reach the man's body.

He said the victim missed an appearance in district court where he was to appear on a charge of sexual assault of a child.