Man killed Texas student in her apartment after two dates, police say
AUSTIN (KXAN) – Police in Austin have arrested a man they say is linked to the March death of 21-year-old student Natalia Monet Cox.
Henry Watson, 24, is accused of killing Cox, a senior at Huston-Tillotson University in Austin, TX, at 2:43 a.m. on March 31 at the Colonial Grand at Canyon Pointe Apartments in northwest Austin.
Watson’s arrest affidavit shows that police responded to a report of a “terrorist threat” involving Cox and Watson a week before the alleged murder. Cox reportedly told police that she had only met Watson three days before and had been on two dates with him.
Then, in the early morning of March 31, police said Watson showed up at his apartment with a gun.
Cox reportedly texted Watson to tell him that she wasn’t feeling well and didn’t want him to come, but Watson did it anyway. Then the police said they heard a knock on her door. Cox asked Watson if he was there, and he replied: “Open the door,” said the affidavit.
Cox called him via FaceTime: when Watson reportedly said he had a gun and was going to shoot the door if she didn’t open it. A roommate then called the police, and Cox continued to talk to Watson to calm him down, according to the affidavit.
Police said Cox received text messages from people identifying themselves as Watson’s family four days after the March 25 incident. One of them, from someone identified as Watson’s father, said Watson was “very suicidal” and wanted to talk to him about what happened.
She did not answer.
She received another text from the same number almost 24 hours later asking her to meet at another apartment complex, and she never responded, according to the affidavit.
The Lone Star Fugitive Task Force found Watson sleeping in his car in a Round Rock parking lot, according to the affidavit. Authorities report that it was the same vehicle recorded on surveillance footage leaving the scene on March 31 a few minutes after the first 9-1-1 call.
Detectives say they found 9mm handgun ammunition in Watson’s car when they searched it on April 1. The police also found a lever. Detectives say there were pry bar marks on the doorframe of Cox’s apartment.
An autopsy determined Cox’s death to be homicide by gunshot. Watson now faces a charge of first degree murder.
He is due in court on June 10, according to records.
KXAN has contacted Watson’s attorney for a statement, and once we get it we’ll update this story.