Police investigate woman’s death as a homicide



Police are investigating the death of a woman who was found Monday at a North Austin homeless camp as a homicide.

A group of homeless people called 911 about 1:49 a.m. after they saw Tasha Morrison, 27, lying next to a couch in the field at the 8800 block of Interstate 35, next to the Avesta Solano apartments and just south of Rundberg Lane, police said.

Morrison was unresponsive when officers arrived. Medics began life-saving measures but their efforts were unsuccessful, said Sgt. Brian Miller with Austin police’s homicide unit. Morrison was pronounced dead shortly after 2 a.m.

Police initially described Morrison’s death as suspicious. On Tuesday, an autopsy performed by the Travis County medical examiner’s office ruled her death as a homicide.

Morrison’s body had apparent signs of trauma but police did not release more details about her injuries, pending further investigation.

Police said they do not believe Morrison was living at the homeless camp.

Police said the North Austin homeless camp has been forced to break up. Authorities said the owner of the property had asked residents to move out of by Tuesday.

However, on Wednesday several tents remained on the undeveloped property. Elbert Porch, 34, has been staying at the camp about three months. He said the effort to remove them started before Morrison’s body was found several dozen yards from where about 12 people stay.

Another resident at the camp, Bridgette Fuller, 51, said Morrison had frequented the area for years. But Morrison never lived at that homeless camp, she said.

“She did not stay here, someone put her there,” Fuller said, gesturing toward the brown couch where Morrison’s body was found.

In 2012, Morrison and a man were charged with sexual assault of a child after a runaway teen girl said they forced her to perform oral sex in a North Austin motel just four miles north of the homeless camp, court records show.

The 15-year-old girl from Irving told police that shortly after meeting them, Morrison and the man took her to the Budget Inn at 9106 N. I-35 and forced her to perform oral sex, an affidavit says. The victim left the room and flagged the motel’s security officer. Morrison was arrested after she admitted what happened, the affidavit says.

Travis County Jail records show Morrison was convicted for reckless injury to a child, a state felony. She was sentenced to 15 months in jail in September 2013.

Morrison has been charged with six felonies since 2005, including a conviction of possession of cocaine on Dec. 16, court records show.


Reader Comments


Next Up in News

Why the Trump team's economic promises will be hard to execute
Why the Trump team's economic promises will be hard to execute
The middle class will see a big tax cut, but the wealthy will not. American businesses will pay much lower taxes, and as a consequence bring back...
Photo shows Miami police breaking U.S. Flag Code
Photo shows Miami police breaking U.S. Flag Code
Just one day after President-elect Donald Trump suggested that anyone who burns an American flag should be subject to jail time or loss of...
Top Trump adviser ties China and North Korea to Jihadis
Top Trump adviser ties China and North Korea to Jihadis
President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, has been much more outspoken about Islamic...
Gunman who held 11 people hostage in Florida bank robbery surrenders
Gunman who held 11 people hostage in Florida bank robbery surrenders
A man surrendered to police in Jacksonville, Florida, on Thursday morning after he held 11 people hostage during a bank robbery attempt.
Mnuchin outlines 'largest tax change since Reagan'
Americans should expect the "largest tax change since Reagan," with federal tax cuts for average income earners as well as U.
More Stories

You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myStatesman.com.

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of free premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to myStatesman.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myStatesman.com.