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Suspect accused of attacking man with machete before body found in South Austin woods

An autopsy revealed the man had been hit in the head several times with a machete.

AUSTIN, Texas — A 30-year-old man has been arrested after a person's body was found in a wooded area in South Austin.

According to an affidavit obtained by KVUE, someone reached out to the Austin Police Department on April 13 to report that someone had been killed in the Williamson Creek Greenbelt off of Stassney Lane in South Austin. The murder allegedly happened on April 8 or 9. The affidavit states several people live in campsites along the greenbelt.

The caller told police that he believed a man who went by "Taco" killed him. Using a police database, the detective was able to identify "Taco" as Thomas Gonzalez.

After searching through the area, officers were eventually able to find the body in the 1800 block of East Stassney Lane at around 5:45 p.m. on Saturday, April 16. The victim was later identified as Lawrence Grayson.

An autopsy revealed Grayson had been hit in the head several times with a machete.

A witness who later spoke with investigators said she was there the night that the man had been attacked. The witness said Gonzalez hit Grayson, unprovoked. When Grayson ran away, the suspect ran after him with the machete in his hand, the witness said.

Credit: Austin Police Department
A man has been arrested after a person was found dead in the woods in South Austin.

The witness said they believe the attack stemmed from an earlier incident in which the victim allegedly robbed someone else at the campsite.

Three days after the man's body was found, police arrested Gonzalez in the 6000 block of Wing Feather Drive. He is charged with first-degree murder.

Detectives are still asking for any tips that are out there. If you have information or video, you are asked to call APD Homicide at 512-974-TIPS; the Crime Stoppers anonymous tip line at 512-472-8477 (TIPS), use the Crime Stoppers app, or email APD Homicide at homicide.apd@austintexas.gov. You may remain anonymous. 

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