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Suspect in gruesome cold case murder dies months after charge was dismissed

Bradford Hudson, 60, died earlier this summer, court records show

The capital murder case against Bradford Hudson was dismissed in March.
The capital murder case against Bradford Hudson was dismissed in March. (KSAT)

SAN ANTONIO – The primary suspect in a gruesome 2013 cold case murder in San Antonio has died, months after a charge in the case was dismissed, court records confirm.

Bradford Hudson, 60, died earlier this summer, records show.

Hudson was taken into custody in Northern California last year and then later charged for the brutal July 2013 murder of Martha Batchelor after a DNA sample taken from Hudson matched DNA found at the scene, an apartment in the 4900 block of Woodstone Drive.

Hudson was extradited to San Antonio late last year, but the capital murder charge against him was dismissed in March pending further investigation.

Hudson had been free on bond since April on an unrelated misdemeanor assault case for an incident that took place while he was in jail.

Prosecutors dismissed the case last month, citing Hudson’s death, records show.

Batchelor’s sister said she was informed of Hudson’s death late last week by an official from the Bexar County District Attorney’s Office, who told her Hudson had recently passed away at a San Antonio medical facility.

Martha Batchelor was murdered in July 2013.
Martha Batchelor was murdered in July 2013. (KSAT)

Batchelor, 53, was found dead by a maintenance worker inside her apartment more than seven years ago.

Authorities said Batchelor was awakened around 4:30 in the morning by someone knocking at her door or coming into the apartment. Police said Batchelor tried to call 911 but was likely overpowered by the man in her bedroom, in a scene that was described at the time as “heinous.”

A DNA sample taken from Batchelor’s apartment was entered into a national database, where it remained for six years.

That sample matched Hudson, whose DNA was entered into the same database last summer after he was arrested for family violence in California.

Hudson also lived in the same apartment complex as Batchelor at the time of her killing, according to an arrest warrant for Hudson.

Family of cold case murder victim says Bexar County DA left them in the dark on dismissal

Despite strong evidence against Hudson, according to case records obtained by the KSAT 12 Defenders, prosecutors dismissed the capital murder charge this spring.

DA officials have not said much about the case against Hudson being dismissed.

A spokeswoman in late April said via email that the case had been dismissed for further investigation.

The Defenders made three requests earlier this year to interview District Attorney Joe Gonzales about the dismissal and concerns expressed by Batchelor’s family, but did not hear back and were not provided a written statement.

A DA spokeswoman did not return an email seeking comment on Hudson’s death Monday.

An official with the Bexar County Medical Examiner’s Office on Monday said the agency had no information to release because it had not been in possession of Hudson’s body.

Hudson’s attorney did not return a phone call seeking comment Monday.


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