BENTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Benton County man was indicted in connection to his girlfriend’s suicide, according to a release from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
TBI officials said 45-year-old Jimmy Beck Jr. is being charged with one count of failure to report a death under suspicious, unusual or unnatural circumstances and one count of tampering with or fabricating evidence.
The investigation began on November 26, 2019 at the request of District Attorney General Matt Stowe. TBI Special Agents joined the Benton County Sheriff’s Office in investigating the death of Melanie Herndon. Herndon was found dead inside her home in the 4700 block of Point Mason Road in Big Sandy.
Investigators were first alerted to her death from a call from her boyfriend’s father. He lives in Los Angeles, California.
Beck Jr. told his father that Herndon had committed suicide that morning. He then flew out to California and told the story to his father, who then called the Benton County Sheriff’s Office.
TBI Agents said Beck Jr. has never contacted authorities to personally report the incident or give an account of what he witnessed. An autopsy determined Herndon died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
On Monday, Beck Jr. returned to Benton County from California. He was then arrested and booked into the Benton County Jail on a $5,000 dollar bond.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a prevention network of 161 crisis centers that provides a 24/7, toll-free hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. If you need help, please call 1-800-273-8255.