AUSTIN, Texas – Law enforcement authorities say one of their own notified his wife that he planned to kill himself. But he actually faked his own death and fled to Mexico, according to those conducting the investigation.
An arrest affidavit revealed Friday that Officer Coleman Martin, 29, (pictured) of Austin Police Department, texted his wife a photo of a note indicating he meant to drown himself in a lake near the border with Mexico. This occurred earlier in the week, reported CBS News.
Afterward, the report indicates Martin withdrew $300 from an ATM on April 25 and bought a raft at a sporting goods store, according to the affidavit. He then reportedly used his debit card to buy rope and concrete blocks at a Home Depot.
Police launched a missing persons investigation that night. They learned an officer had stopped Martin earlier in the evening. Martin told the officer he was heading to Mexico for vacation. The officer let him go without incident, saying there was no indication he was in a crisis, KEYE reports.
A suicide note was discovered when investigators found Martin’s vehicle by a lake the next day. An inflatable raft was found on the shore with scrape marks on the side, indicating a concrete block had been pushed over the side, the affidavit says.
Police found Martin’s wallet in his car, but his passport was missing. Investigators later discovered someone had accessed his email account after he texted the suicidal message to his wife. The IP address was traced to Mexico. They also discovered he had purchased a new tablet computer, according to CBS.
The affidavit states that police discovered Martin had a close relationship with an unidentified woman, KEYE reports. The woman told investigators that Martin had not killed himself and “the entire event was an effort to stage his own death.”
The woman said she received an email from Martin explaining that he abandoned his car at the lake and rode a bike to a convenience store. He then wrote that he grabbed a taxi to the border and hopped on a bus into the interior of the country, the affidavit states.
Authorities on Saturday continued to search for Martin, who’s been charged with a misdemeanor count of making a false report.
(Photo: Austin Police Department)