Theresa Balboa, the girlfriend of Samuel's father, has been arrested on a charge of tampering with evidence

By Steve Helling
June 09, 2021 05:13 PM
samuel olson
Samuel Olson
| Credit: Houston Police/Twitter

An autopsy has officially identified the body of a child found in a Texas hotel room as 5-year-old Samuel Olson - and the cause of death was blunt head trauma.

Samuel was reported missing on May 27, but authorities believe may have died weeks before they were notified of his disappearance.

Theresa Balboa, the girlfriend of Samuel's biological father, has been charged with tampering with evidence in the case. At the time of her arrest, PEOPLE confirms, she was out of jail on bond over an unrelated assault charge.

In charging documents, authorities say that Balboa, 29, allegedly called her roommate on May 10 to tell him that the boy had died.

During the police investigation into Samuel's disappearance, the roommate reportedly told police that he returned home after the phone call and found the child bruised and unresponsive on the bed.

The roommate allegedly said he and Balboa moved Samuel's body to a bathtub and left him there for two days, according to the charging documents. Later, they allegedly wrapped the boy up in a plastic sheet and placed him in a tote to take to a storage unit in Webster, Texas.

During the search for Samuel, another male friend received a call from Balboa asking for help, authorities said in the charging documents.

The friend allegedly told investigators that he picked Balboa up and the two drove to the storage unit, where they retrieved a plastic container with a foul odor and transported it to a motel room in Jasper, Texas.

Police were directed to the motel after receiving an anonymous tip from CrimeStoppers.

Samuel Olson
Samuel Olson
| Credit: Courtesy Sarah Olson

Balboa, who previously claimed that Samuel had been taken from her Houston apartment, was arrested on a charge of tampering with evidence after she was also found at the motel, Houston's assistant police chief, Heather Morris, told reporters in a press conference.

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Samuel's father, Dalton Olson, has not been charged, but is continuing to face questions from police, according to Morris. Police previously said that Samuel's biological parents have shared custody of the child.

On Thursday, Samuel's mother, Sarah Olson, said in comments shared with PEOPLE that she was "heartbroken" by the boy's death. "All I want is justice for Samuel, my baby," Sarah said, according to her attorney. "I do not want people to forget Samuel's name."

Theresa Balboa is being held on $600,000 bond. She has not yet entered a plea, and court records do not reflect an attorney authorized to speak on her behalf.