Friend: Local murder suspect shot victim, buried body in Burleson County

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BURLESON COUNTY, Tex. (KBTX)- KBTX has learned a man killed in Burleson County was shot inside a home near Caldwell and then buried in the backyard, according to a friend of the suspect.

Michael McFarlane, 35, was arrested by Burleson County authorities and charged with murder and tampering with physical evidence. The charges are connected to the murder investigation of Zachary Rockwell, 36, of Arkansas.

Rockwell's family reported him missing on Sunday, July 7.

Investigators say he was last seen by his family in May and new information obtained on Monday led them to the discovery of his body on Tuesday near a home on Tiger Trial near Caldwell.

News 3's Haley Vyrostek drove to the location Tuesday evening where she was met by a man named Stanley who claimed to be a former co-worker and close friend of McFarlane.

Stanley claims that McFarlane shot Rockwell during a dispute at the home, then buried his body in the back of his property where it remained for over a month.

Stanley added that when McFarlane learned of the missing person report that was filed on Sunday, he decided to turn himself in.

McFarlane remains in the Burleson County Jail.

The Burleson County Sheriff’s Office and Texas Department of Public Safety’s Texas Ranger Division are investigating the case.

The body was sent to the Travis County Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the cause of death and to be identified.

Investigators are continuing to work on this developing case. At this time, no further information is available for release.