A 36-year-old man who was facing life without parole killed himself Tuesday morning before his trial was set to begin.
Authorities say Eric James Norwood took his own life Tuesday morning near Lorena.
Norwood was set to stand trial in Waco’s 19th State District Court on charges of aggravated sexual assault of a child younger than 6 and indecency with a child by contact.
If convicted, Norwood, a self-employed home remodeler, faced up to life in prison with no hope for parole.
Norwood’s attorneys, Gerald Villarrial and Thomas West, said they met with their client on Saturday and Sunday and they saw no indication of suicidal tendencies.
“I’ve had Eric for a client for a long time,” Villarrial said. “You get to know somebody and their family well over five years. They are fine people.”
Norwood’s case was delayed getting to trial when he had a serious motorcycle accident a few years ago. After he recovered, he was found incompetent to stand trial in October 2017 and spent time in a state mental facility.
The charges against Norwood were enhanced by a 2005 conviction for possession of methamphetamine, according to court records.