Man charged with tampering, fabricating evidence in the murder of Jacob Duffee

Man charged with tampering, fabricating evidence in the murder of Jacob Duffee
Oscar Pena Cerna (Source: Lubbock County Detention Center)
Oscar Diaz Cerna (Source: Lubbock County Detention Center)
Oscar Diaz Cerna (Source: Lubbock County Detention Center)
Jacob Duffee (Source: Landscape Tech)
Jacob Duffee (Source: Landscape Tech)

The father of the man accused of murdering 30-year-old Jacob Duffee has been indicted by a Lubbock County grand jury on charges of tampering with/fabricating physical evidence with intent to conceal a corpse. The charge is considered a second-degree felony, which if found guilty, comes with a sentence between two to 20 years.

Duffee's body was found on Oct. 31, 2017, hidden in the area of East 44th Street and Magnolia Avenue. He went missing from Levelland on Sept. 29, 2017.

According to the police report, 41-year-old Oscar Pena Cerna provided a sworn statement saying about one month ago he received a call from his son, 23-year-old Oscar Diaz Cerna, asking if he could pick him up. Oscar Pena Cerna said he went to pick up his son. While in the pickup, Oscar Diaz Cerna told his father he just killed his boss by shooting him in the face.

The arrest warrant says Oscar Diaz Cerna is charged with causing the death of Jacob Duffee.

The father said his son asked him to help him get rid of the body and the body was in his bathtub.

The police report says the father saw the body in the bathtub and the water was running but did not see the person's face because it was covered up. He told police the person was dead. He goes on to tell police it was dark and he and his son placed the body in the bed of his truck and hid the body in a water drainage hole just north of 50th Street and Magnolia Ave. He told police he disposed of the bed liner of his truck. The father also told police he helped his son by getting rid of the gun by throwing it into a lake. The Lubbock Fire Rescue Dive Team searched the Canyon Lakes in Buddy Holly Park on Wednesday morning.

Lubbock County Medical examiner Dr. Sridhar Natarajan confirms that Duffee was identified by fingerprints. His body was found in an advanced state of decomposition and he had suffered head trauma with gunshot wounding.

The day after Duffee's body was found, officers with the Lubbock County Dive Team searched Canyon Lakes at Buddy Holly Park on Caesar Chavez Drive and Avenue U and recovered what they believe to be the murder weapon.

During Tuesday's investigation, LPD investigators were able to secure a murder warrant for 23-year-old Oscar Diaz Cerna. He is currently booked in the Lubbock County Detention Center for murder and being held on a $250,000 bond.

Oscar Pena Cerna, 41, was arrested the next morning at his home and was charged with tampering with evidence.

During the investigation, the police report says blood was found on numerous walls of Oscar Diaz Cerna's apartment.

The Lubbock County Sheriff's Office says officers found Duffee's 2005 F-250 pickup near County Road 7570 and University in South Lubbock. The door was open and the lights were on.

Since then, there have been tips he has been spotted in Lubbock. Levelland Police say he may have been seen at Market Street on 19th and Quaker on October 8, 2017. His family says they have received tips he may have been seen at the USDA office in Lubbock.

This case remains under investigation by the Lubbock Police Department Persons Crime Unit.

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