Crime

Grisly Details Emerge In Grapevine Murder and Dismemberment

Police recreating the chain of events that ended with the murder of 24-year-old Texas Woman's University student Jacqueline Vandagriff produced a grim narrative of a night out gone very wrong. 

Vandagriff's body was found burning last Wednesday morning at about 6:30 a.m. in a kiddie pool in Grapevine's Acorn Woods Park. She'd been dismembered. Shortly before police arrived, witnesses said they saw a white man standing over the fire.

The Grapevine Police investigation retraced her movements during her final night. She met a man named Charles Dean Bryant in Denton last Tuesday night and went to a pair of local bars, the Fry Street Public House and Shots and Crafts. Grapevine police Sgt. Robert Eberling said Monday that police did not yet know how Vandagriff and Bryant knew each other, but said it was possible the meeting last Tuesday was the first time to meet in person after connecting online.

The pair left Denton together at around 11 p.m. Bryant and Vandagriff apparently headed to Bryant's house. Police tracked her movement by triangulating the location as her phone pinged nearby cell phone towers. 


At 4 a.m. Wednesday, Grapevine police say, Bryant bought a shovel at Wal-Mart in Haslet. Police eventually found tentative digging marks in his back yard, and a spot of grass that was worn down and dead. Friends of Bryant confirmed that, while there was one kiddie pool in the yard at the time of the search, there'd recently been two.  
 
Vandagriff was later identified by her fingerprints. Fingerprints found on her body led police to Bryant and her purse was found in Bryant's trash.
 
The arrest warrant paints a picture of a man with problems with his ex, who provided information that helped police focus on him as a suspect:
University of North Texas police arrested Bryant twice in the week before the murder, once for criminal trespassing on Sept. 6 and then again on Sept. 7 for stalking a woman on campus. Bryant was released from Denton County Jail on Sept. 9.

His is currently being held in Tarrant County Jail. He is charged with capital murder. His bail is $1 million.
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Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He's a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.
Contact: Stephen Young