San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

June 30th, 2010
Police arrest suspect in Buda murder

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Mark David Simmons.

STAFF REPORT

In Branson, Mo, Tuesday morning, police arrested the suspect in the April murder of a Buda man.

In May, The Hays County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) filed capital murder charges Mark David Simmons, 51, in the death of Steven Wayne Woelfel in Buda on April 17.

HCSO detectives believed Simmons might be in Branson and contacted the Branson Police Department (BPD) for assistance. The United States Marshal’s Office also was notified of developments in the case.

Branson police searched motel parking lots in that town Tuesday morning for a vehicle matching the description given to them following an armed robbery and attempted robbery during the weekend. The vehicle, a light blue Hyundai Sonata, also matched the description of a missing vehicle following and connected to the Buda murder. The vehicle was located in a motel parking lot and was reported stolen out of Texas.

Police arrested Simmons after a stand-off.

An HCSO detective and a Texas Ranger are en route to Branson to gather evidence and continue the investigation.

Simmons is one of the last persons known to have been in Woelfel’s company and, according to the HCSO, is a long-time associate. On April 29, investigators identified Simmons as a person of interest in the case.

At about 10:50 a.m. on April 17, the Buda Fire Department (BFD) responded to a reported structure fire at 1132 Live Oak Loop, located in the Hays Country Oaks subdivision just northwest of Buda. Arriving fire units found the detached garage at that location to be fully engulfed. Once the fire was extinguished, Woelfel’s body was discovered in the remains of the fire.

Evidence collected at the fire scene has led investigators to believe that the fire was actually set in an attempt to cover up the murder of Woelfel.

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