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Man killed in Utah garage was ‘bludgeoned and bound,’ warrant says


WILLARD, Utah (KSL) — An Ohio man who was found dead in a Willard resident’s garage had been tied up and beaten, according to a newly unsealed search warrant.

Cody D. Henderson, 27, was found Nov. 1 inside a garage, 435 S. Main, in Willard. The cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma, according to investigators.

The investigation began when Willard Police Chief Jean Loveland received a call from a person who had heard from a woman that Chay Blair had called “and said that he had killed Cody Henderson and left his body in the garage,” according to a search warrant affidavit filed in 1st District Court.

“Chief Loveland responded to the home and discovered a deceased person in the garage that appeared to have been bludgeoned and bound with ropes. The suspect resided in the home and had spent time with the decedent in the home and the garage just hours before,” the affidavit states.

Chay Lance Blair, 25, was arrested later that day in Idaho, and later charged with murder, a first-degree felony, as well as abuse or desecration of a dead body, a third-degree felony.

A motive for the killing had not been revealed as of Tuesday. The Willard City Police Department is the lead agency in the investigation, while the Box Elder County Sheriff’s Office and Utah Department of Public Safety are assisting.

Investigators seized a motel key from Henderson, a rental car key fob, “notes” from inside the home, and a blood swab collected from the back patio, according to the return for the search warrant.

Blair was being held Tuesday in the Box Elder County Jail without bail. An initial court appearance and bail hearing is scheduled for Tuesday.

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