Murder of Ron Shumway by Christopher Colbert examined on Web of Lies

Mugshot of Christopher Colbert
Christopher Colbert was convicted of murdering Ron Shumway. Pic credit: Dallas County Jail

Web of Lies is investigating the murder of Ron Shumway, who was strangled to death by his tenant, Christopher Colbert, at his home in Dallas, Texas, in 2015.

The 57-year-old Shumway had allowed Colbert to live rent-free in his home in the Oak Cliff area of Dallas. He also allowed his tenant to drive his SUV.

Tragically, Colbert, a former hairstylist and a photographer, would also become Shumway’s murderer.

In April 2015, Shumway and Colbert got into a drunken argument which culminated in the latter strangling his landlord to death. Colbert then drove to Home Depot, where he picked up some cement and proceeded to entomb the remains in a slab of concrete in the backyard.

Christopher Colbert stole Ron Shumway’s identity

Shumway then assumed his victim’s identity so he could sell the house and pocket the proceeds. He superimposed his picture onto Shumway’s driver’s license and then faxed the faked license to a prospective buyer of the property.

The house buyer sent $110,000 to Shumway’s bank account as payment, but as Colbert had his bank card, he was able to withdraw the funds and eventually flee to California.

In September of 2015, approximately six months after the murder, the new house owner unearthed Shumway’s remains and contacted the police. The body was decomposing badly, but it was clear the hands and feet had been tied with cable ties.

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Colbert was eventually tracked down to Los Angeles; he was identified in a photo line-up by the house buyer as the man who had impersonated Shumway.

Colbert tried to argue that he had killed Shumway in self-defense and that his former landlord had actually tried to strangle him. He said he failed to go to the police at the time because he was in shock. However, the cops weren’t buying it, and he was charged with murder.

In January 2019, Colbert pleaded guilty to murder. He also pleaded guilty to theft, tampering with a government record, securing execution of a document by deception, and money laundering. He received 25 years in prison for the murder and the theft, and he got another 20 years for each of the other charges.

More from Web of Lies

Follow the links to read about more horrific crimes profiled on Web of Lies.

Ryan Vallee tormented numerous teenage girls from his local high school through a sextortion scheme that involved him taking control of his victim’s online social media accounts and demanding that he send them nude pictures.

William Melchert-Dinkel stalked internet suicide forums in the hope of encouraging vulnerable men and women to commit suicide for his own sick gratification. He requested that his victims hang themselves in front of a webcam.

Web of Lies airs at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.

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