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Trial Begins in 30-Year-Old Homicide

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Weedman Charged with Murder

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

HOUSTON COUNTY – It’s been nearly 30 years but justice may finally be served for the homicide of Rusty Redman in September of 1990.  

The trial of William Earl Weedman, Jr., 50 – who stands accused of the murder of Redman – began on Tuesday, Jan. 7 with jury selection.  

As previously reported in The Messenger, Houston County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) Investigator Jerry Kaelin began working the case in late February of 2018 after new information surfaced in the Redman investigation.

At that time, Weedman, Jr., had recently been paroled from prison. Shortly after his release, however, he committed another crime and was detained in the Ft. Bend County Jail.

In an affidavit of probable cause obtained at the time of his arrest in 2018, witnesses reported “…  Weedman had bragged about the murder of Redman – as well as overhearing jail conversations about the real truth involving the death of Rusty.”

During the course of Kaelin’s investigation, the HCSO investigator indicated his belief that Weedman suspected Redman had information implicating him in a string of crimes in Harris County.

This belief led Weedman to take Redman’s life, the affidavit reported.

“On the date identified in this affidavit, (Sept. 13, 1990) Weedman and Rusty Redman were at the Weedman’s family property in Houston County. Weedman retrieved a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun from the home and loaded ammunition into the breach. The victim (Redman) was standing on a wooden porch that was attached to a single wide trailer home and Weedman shot him in the head, killing him instantly,” the affidavit stated.

During the course of the investigation into Redman’s homicide, Weedman changed his story several times saying at first Redman had accidentally shot himself. Weedman then claimed he had accidentally shot Redman and then lied because he was scared.

While he was still searching for an alibi and “…unbeknownst to investigators, Weedman was a prime suspect in a homicide that occurred in Harris County, where an elderly man was burglarized, shot in the head and his home was burned to cover evidence,” the affidavit indicated.

Weedman was convicted of this crime but, as mentioned earlier, had recently been paroled. As the new investigation into Redman’s death continued, Kaelin uncovered witnesses close to Weedman who told him “… Weedman said he was going to take Rusty to his property and do away with him.”

After Redman was killed, the affidavit reported Weedman telling people, “I tested that safety out on his face.”

Forensic tests on the shotgun at the time of Redman’s homicide indicated the firearm was in operational condition and no malfunctions were observed.

Given the new evidence, Weedman was served with the arrest warrant in the Ft. Bend County Jail and then transported back to Houston County where he was booked into custody. He is being held on a $200,000 bond.

Testimony in the trial began on Wednesday, Jan. 8. For more information on the proceedings, check back online or see the Sunday, Jan. 12 edition of The Messenger. 

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at wjohnson@messenger-news.com.