CPS employee arrests linked to Greenville teen's murder




Posted on September 24, 2013 at 5:04 PM

Updated Wednesday, Sep 25 at 9:58 AM

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One current and one former employee of Child Protective Services along with a third woman are jailed on charges related to the investigation of the murder of Alicia Moore, the Greenville teen who was found dead in a trunk last November. 

Natalie Reynolds, 33, is charged with three counts of official oppression and one count of tampering or fabricating physical evidence. Her bond is $40,000. 

Also jailed are Rebekah Ross and Laura Ard, said Hunt County Sheriff's Department spokesman Rick McDonald. Ard, 60, is charged with a single count of tampering with physical evidence. Ross is charged with two counts of tampering/fabricating physical evidence and three counts of official oppression. She is being held on a $50,000 bond.

The indictments are sealed, which limits the details authorities can release. 

Patrick Crimmins, chief spokesman for CPS, said Reynolds has worked as an investigative supervisor with the department since June, 2002. Ard was hired in September 1992 as an investigative program director. She retired in March of this year. 

Crimmins said the department  was unaware of the arrests and that he first learned of them in a report in the Greenville Herald-Banner. He had not read the indictments. 

McDonald said he thought the state attorney general's office headed the investigation. A spokesperson there declined to comment. 

Alicia Moore was a 16-year-old Greenville girl whose body was found stuffed in a trunk and left beside a rural Van Zandt County road on November 6, 2012. After an arduous six-month investigation, police arrested and charged her uncle, Michael Moore, in the crime. 

He was not arrested until May, despite being linked to his niece's rape and murder in January by DNA evidence. 

The case sparked national headlines and prompted a $25,000 reward to be issued for information leading to an indictment.