HILL COUNTY, Texas – Investigators say a Hill County man found dead Thursday had been dragged from the back of a pickup truck with a strap around his neck.
Three men were arrested by the Hill County Sheriff’s Office on murder charges Friday after the discovery of Christopher Neal Beckham, 24, lying dead in a field early Thursday morning.
The men, identified as the deceased’s brother, Marcus Alan Beckham, 25, of Milford, Raymond Scott Harrington, 32, of Trinidad, Colo., and Raymond George Harrington, 23, of Granbury, were arraigned Friday and are being held in the Hill County jail on bonds of $1 million each.
Christopher Beckham, also of Milford, was found by two men in a plowed field off HCR 3425 between Malone and Irene just after 8 a.m. Thursday.
According to reports confirmed by Hill County Chief Deputy Sheriff Steve Girsh, Beckham had a strap attached from around his neck to a vehicle bumper and was dragged.
Deputies had traveled to the victim’s home to inform family members and it was there they met Marcus Beckham and the Harrington brothers and interviews followed to establish a timeline of events, Girsh said.
“Three of the men were lifelong friends and the night appears to have started out as a night of drinking and playing pool but progressed from a verbal altercation to a physical altercation that simply got out of hand,” Girsh said, saying the investigation into Christopher Beckham’s death is ongoing.
“Marcus Alan Beckham provided a confession in which a strap was wrapped around the victim’s neck and tied to the bumper of a vehicle owned by Raymond Scott Harrington. The victim was reportedly dragged for approximately four to five minutes,” said Girsh in a press release, which also stated, “The injuries to the victim were consistent with being dragged and were pronounced on the face, upper body, neck and hands. It is unknown if the extreme cold played a role in the death of Christopher Beckham.”
A vehicle was impounded and is being processed by department investigators and members of the Department of Public Safety Crime Lab for additional evidence. Other evidence is being collected from additional locations.
The body of the victim was sent to the Southwest Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas for an autopsy.
Christopher Beckham was a 2004 graduate of Frost High School in Navarro County.
A fund to help pay for funeral expenses for Beckham has been established by family members at Prosperity Bank in Blooming Grove.