Winford Watkins (Credit: Collin County District Attorney)

Winford Watkins (Credit: Collin County District Attorney)

MCKINNEY (CBSDFW.COM) — Authorities are searching for a 44-year-old Dallas man who was sentenced to 45 years in prison for his role in the burglary of a deceased man in McKinney.

Winford Watkins (shown) was sentenced in absentia on Friday after failing to appear in court.

Watkins and accomplices Smokey-Dawn Smith and Christopher Graham drove to a McKinney residence in 2011 to manufacture methamphetamine with an acquaintance.

After the acquaintance died from an overdose, Watkins, Smith, and Graham temporarily left the home. When they returned, Smith and Graham stole jewelry, silverware, televisions and other items from the deceased man’s residence.

Watkins aided in the getaway by jumpstarting a van stolen from the same residence. Before leaving, Graham started a fire that burned the house down.

McKinney police identified Watkins as a suspect and apprehended him in Dallas. When arrested, he possessed a number of items stolen from the home.

The court trial began on Aug. 20 and concluded on Friday. Watkins failed to appear on Friday and was convicted in absentia.

He was found guilty and sentenced to 45 years for burglary of a habitation and 20 years for felony theft.

In an earlier jury trial, Graham was sentenced to 75 years.

Anyone with information on Watkin’s whereabouts is encouraged to call Investigator J.D. Spielman at 972-548-4729.

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