Cookeville Man Confesses To Strangling and Killing Wife - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Cookeville Man Confesses To Strangling and Killing Wife

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Chad Bell Chad Bell

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. - At about 9:05 a.m. on Monday Cookeville officers were dispatched to 890 Walton Trail to investigate a possible missing person.

One of the residents at that address, Chad Bell, reported that he awoke sometime near 5 a.m. Monday, started getting ready to go to work and then discovered his wife, Sara Bell, was missing from their home. Sara's vehicle was still parked in their driveway. There was no indication of forced entry into the residence.

Cookeville police officers immediately began to search for Sara and started a missing person investigation. The investigation included extensive interviews with neighbors, utilization of a police tracking dog, an aerial search of the surrounding area and an additional ground search conducted by the Putnam County Rescue Squad.

Family members produced a missing person 'flyer' that was widely distributed.

In the process of conducting the missing person investigation, Cookeville investigators uncovered some evidence that made them question the information given by Chad.

Chad was interviewed again and ultimately admitted to killing his wife early Monday morning. He said he strangled Sara during an argument. Police recovered Sara's body from inside Chad's work van.

Cookeville police charged Chad, 35, with second degree homicide in a warrant taken by Lt. Carl Sells. Chad has been custody, and will remain there pending an arraignment.

With the assistance of the Office of the District Attorney General, search warrants were obtained to locate and recover additional evidence related to this investigation.

The body of Sara, age 32, was located late Monday night and sent to the state medical examiners office for further investigation.

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