Fred Williams Tangela WaltonA continuance has been granted in the first-degree murder trial of a Monticello man accused of killing a Warren woman then burying her body in a wooded area behind his home.

Fred Lee Williams, 51, is charged with abuse of a corpse and first-degree murder in the April 2013 death of 36-year-old Tangela Walton, of Warren.

Williams’ trial was scheduled to begin this week but was postponed until late August because a local physician who is expected to be a key witness for the defense was unable to testify.

A psychologist at the Arkansas State Hospital said Williams is fit to stand trial.

Though Williams has a documented history of mental health treatment for depression, he did not manifest symptoms of mental disease or defect at the time the alleged murder occurred, according to Lacey C. Willett, a licensed forensic psychologist and assistant clinical professor of psychiatry.

Williams, who reportedly has a history of seizures as a result of a traumatic brain injury in 1982, told officers that he had a seizure while engaging in sex with Walton. He said when he awoke she was not breathing.

Williams reportedly told police he believes Walton panicked and exerted herself while trying to get him off of her during the seizure. Not knowing what to do, he said he buried her body.

The state Medical Examiner listed Walton’s death as a homicide caused by asphyxia, the means of which was undetermined. The medical examiner’s report also noted multiple blunt force injuries.

Pretrial is set for August 6 with trial scheduled for August 28 through August 28.