Man Used Chainsaw to Chop up Woman’s Body

Five years after the disappearance of Maria Jimenez-Rodriguez, a suspect has been apprehended and charged with her murder. Eric Fardell Arceneaux, 51, was taken into custody outside a Houston business last Friday, according to the Houston Police Department. The 29-year-old mother of a special needs child has been missing since 2018, and her body has yet to be discovered.

Arceneaux’s arrest was facilitated by a combination of blood evidence, GPS surveillance, and security footage, which linked him to the crime committed half a decade ago. Jimenez-Rodriguez was last seen after dropping her daughter off at a babysitter’s home in Houston. The following day, a series of text messages from her phone raised alarm among her friends and family.

The messages, sent to a coworker, claimed that the babysitter had requested Jimenez-Rodriguez to pick up her child. Another message indicated that she believed she was being followed. When she failed to report to work the next day, her sister reported her missing.

Family representatives have expressed their belief that the text messages were not sent by Jimenez-Rodriguez, but by Arceneaux, in an attempt to divert suspicion. They also stated that the babysitter denied asking Jimenez-Rodriguez to pick up her child on the day she vanished.

A day after her family reported her missing, Jimenez-Rodriguez’s car was found. Phone records revealed that Arceneaux’s and Jimenez-Rodriguez’s phones were in the same location on the day she disappeared. Surveillance footage from a Home Depot showed Arceneaux purchasing an electric chainsaw and trash bags later that day. A subsequent search of his residence revealed blood splatters on the walls and ceiling.

In 2019, Gloria Rodriguez, Jimenez-Rodriguez’s sister, told the media that she believed Arceneaux had been stalking her sister. She also stated that she was unaware of any previous relationship between the two. However, court records reportedly identified Arceneaux as the missing woman’s boyfriend. Arceneaux’s daughter, unrelated to Jimenez-Rodriguez, told police that her father had a history of domestic violence.

Arceneaux remains in custody with a bail set at $250,000. The case continues to unfold as authorities work to uncover the full extent of the crime and bring justice to Jimenez-Rodriguez’s family.