Fort Hood Soldier Arrested, Facing Murder Charge in 2019 Death of Chelsea Lynell Cheatham

Cory Grafton and Chelsea Lynell Cheatham

A Fort Hood soldier has been arrested in the death of a woman at a Texas hotel last year, authorities said Wednesday.

Cory Grafton, 20, an active-duty soldier assigned to the Texas base, was arrested Tuesday and is facing a murder charge in the death of Chelsea Lynell Cheatham, a 32-year-old who was found not breathing at a Days Inn in June 2019, officials said. Her death has later ruled a homicide.

A witness put Grafton at the scene, Killeen police said Wednesday.

The Texas Rangers, which received a grant for DNA testing last year, approached police with the possibility of using the testing in the year-old case, the Texas Department of Public Safety said.

Police had also gotten a statement from one of Grafton’s co-workers who said he had confessed to the killing, the department of public safety said.

Grafton was being held in lieu of $1 million bail Wednesday night, according to online jail records. It was not clear if he had an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

A motive was not disclosed in the police statements, and the relationship between Grafton and Cheatham was not clear.

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SOURCE: NBC News, Phil Helsel