UPDATE: Murder suspect's mother turns butcher knife over to police

A spokesperson for the Beaumont Police Department said officers have made an arrest in a case involving a body found in a west-end yard Monday.

Samuel Thomas, IV, of Beaumont, is charged in the stabbing death of John R. Neff, of Beaumont.

Thomas has been booked into the Jefferson County Jail on a murder charge.

A Beaumont family found Neff's body in the backyard of its home at 5470 Sunbury around 6 p.m. Monday. Sunbury Drive is in the west end of Beaumont, off of College Street, between Caldwood and 23rd Street.

Theresa Jackson said her grandson discovered the body when he went outside to play.  He found the body covered with a sheet.

Jackson went out and confirmed it was a body.  She said she believes it is the body of her maintenance man.  She said the man has done work for her for years.  Jackson told 12News whoever killed the man took his truck.

Shortly after Jackson was interviewed by 12News she learned that her own son was the one police say did the stabbing.  She said a butcher knife from her kitchen is the weapon that was used and she has turned it over to police.

A police spokesperson said Neff suffered from multiple stab wounds.

Occupants of the house told police that Thomas admitted stabbed Neff. 

Investigators are continuing to determine all of the facts surrounding Neff's death.

Jackson said her son had been in and out of mental facilities since he was 17-years-old and had just been released from jail on March 1 after serving 6 months for assaulting an officer.  She said she has tried to get him help but has been unsuccessful.

Thomas is currently held on $1 million bond.

Neff is survived by his mother, 81, and his daughter Haley who had just come back from a tour of duty in Afghanistan on the day her dad was murdered.

Neff's sister said she is upset to have learned her brother was dead for around 6 hours before anyone contacted police.  She said she believes he was murdered inside the home and his body dragged outside to be hidden in the tall grass.




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