East Texas killer still on the run; here’s why Matthew Edgar was out on bond

He was convicted and sentenced to 99 years despite failing to show up for the balance of his trial
Matthew Edgar walks out of court Jan. 26, which was Day 2 of his murder trial. The next day, he...
Matthew Edgar walks out of court Jan. 26, which was Day 2 of his murder trial. The next day, he did not show up for court. A search in Texas and Louisiana has been underway ever since.(KTRE/SevrinLavenstein)
Published: Jan. 31, 2022 at 5:48 PM CST
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HEMPHILL, Texas. (KSLA) - Monday, Jan. 31 marks Day 5 of the search for an East Texas man who’s been convicted of killing his girlfriend in October 2020.

The Sabine County Sheriff’s Office said Matthew Edgar is believed to be in Texas or Louisiana.

KSLA News 12 found out why Edgar, who was found guilty despite failing to show up for the balance of his trial, was allowed out on bond in the first place.

“A defendant who is detained in jail pending trial of an accusation against him must be released either on personal bond or by reducing the amount of bail required, if the state is not ready for trial of the criminal action for which he is being detained within 90 days from the commencement of his detention if he is accused of a felony,” according to state law.

KSLA News 12′s sister station KTRE reports that Edgar was first arrested in November 2020. He was indicted March 2021.

Edgar was first considered a fugitive Jan. 27, the third day of his trial. Reports show he appeared in court for the first two days of the trial.

His “... trial continued in his absence through his attorney,” according to the Sheriff’s Office. And jurors sentenced Edgar to 99 years in prison.

The news release states that after the search Thursday, which involved the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Lufkin Police Department, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and the US Marshals Service, the Sabine County Sheriff’s Office continued to search.

“Sheriff Tom Maddox would like to remind residents to contact the Sheriff’s Office at (409) 787-2266 or 911 if they either see or encounter Edgar in or around Sabine County,” the news release states. “He asks that residents do not contact Edgar, but rather contact the Sheriff’s Office or nearest law enforcement agency.”

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