Affidavit: Cathedral of Hope employee suffocated with duct tape

Cathedral of Hope employee suffocated with duct tape

A longtime employee with Cathedral of Hope was found late Friday suffocated in his Oak Lawn townhome, Dallas police say.

Robert Lee Covington, 54, died after having duct tape placed over his mouth and nose, according to an arrest affidavit.

Covington served as executive assistant to the lead pastor at one of the nation's largest LGBT congregations.

Detectives arrested 22-year old Yevin Rushing on Saturday after locating a Rolex watch belonging to Covington that Rushing had in his vehicle.

Rushing admitted to meeting Covington through a Craigslist ad, but large portions of the arrest affidavit are redacted in order to maintain the integrity of the investigation and privacy of the victim, police said.

According to police, friends of Covington noticed items missing from his townhome and then spotted Rushing driving a U-Haul near the complex and walking behind his residence.

On Sunday, the congregation where Covington spent several years working and worshipping honored him by wearing bow ties, considered his signature look.

Reverend Neil Cazares-Thomason said his personal assistant for the last two years was dedicated to serving his church and community.

"Lee was always gracious and kind and a great servant leader," Cazares-Thomas said. "Lee always had a smile on his face, there was nothing that ever phased him, nothing that rattled him.”

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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