LIVINGSTON – The Denham Springs man booked with second-degree murder in the death of a Baton Rouge woman alleged that she tried to rob him after he paid her for a massage and "sexual favor," but Sheriff Jason Ard said the suspect's claim "does not fully support" the investigation.
Christopher Landry, 25, made the claim to the Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office in the probable cause report, in which he also allegedly admitted he killed Kayla Ann Denham, 24, on June 5, according to a document obtained by Livingston Parish News.
"From the documents you received today, you learned what the suspect told deputies. The victim cannot speak for herself," Ard said. "We must rely on evidence to find the truth.
"At this point in our investigation, I am going to tell you that based on the evidence we've collected up until now, the suspect's version of what happened is not fully supported by what we've uncovered,"the sheriff said. "Again, this is an ongoing investigation.'
Denham met Landry on Dunn Road approximately 5 a.m. June 5, according to the report by detectives.
Landry allegedly told investigators he paid $140 for a massage and "sexual favor." He went into another room after the exchange , and said he spotted Denham trying to steal his computer bag and wallet, records show.
According to the report, Denham texted her boyfriend, stating she was at the Dunn road address and to keep his phone on because she a bad feeling.
An "altercation" occurred after Landry confronted Denham, according to the report. He allegedly struck her in the head with a metal pipe numerous times and choked her to death.
"Then Christopher grabbed the lifeless body of Kayla Denham and put her body in a plastic container and placed the container with the body in the shed, then placed a tarp over the container," he report stated.
Denham's boyfriend had tried to reach her after she had not returned home and did not answer calls on her cell phone, according to detectives.
She had told her boyfriend the address of her client's home, but her boyfriend could not reach her. He did not see her car at the house when he tried to locate her.
Denham's boyfriend drove around the area and saw a gravel road and found her car in a wooded area, according to Ard. Her boyfriend contacted sheriff's deputies Monday evening.
Landry told investigators he moved Denham's vehicle to a wooded area adjacent to the residence. He also said he destroyed Denham's cell phone and threw her purse in the wooded area by his vehicle.
Investigators issued the search warrant after they found Denham's car. They found Denham's body in a shed.
The investigation led to Landry's arrest, Ard said in a release.
An autopsy conducted by Livingston Parish Coroner Dr. Ron Coe stated that "blunt force with injuries to the head, associated with strangulation," led to Denham's death, Ard said June 7.
Earlier that day, 21st Judicial District Court Judge Bob Morrison increased Landry's bond amount to $250,000. Morrison originally set bond at $175,000.
Landry, 22, 8307 Violet St., remains in custody at Livingston Parish Detention Center. He was also charged with one count of obstruction of justice.
Denham was a native of Prairieville, according to information on her Facebook page.
Michelle Gilliam, Denham's cousin, is serving as a representative for the victim's family. She issued the following statement:
"We are in shock about the loss of our beloved daughter, granddaughter, sister, cousin, and friend. Kayla was a wonderful young woman who always shared a beautiful smile on her face and love in her heart. She will be greatly missed, and we ask for privacy during this very difficult period of mourning for the family."
Denham was a native of Prairieville who graduated from Dutchtown High School in 2011. She also studied as an Occupational Therapy Assistant at Delgado Community College.