Friday, 12 Aug 2022

Routine police traffic stop catches killer with severed head in car boot

A murderer was caught thanks to a routine traffic stop in Las Vegas took a harrowing turn.

Eric Holland, 58, was accused of murdering Richard Miller, 65, after he was reported missing in November.

Police had tried to pull Holland over for a suspended registration on December 23, but were put on high alert when he sped away from them.

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The killer turned off into a parking lot during the high-speed chase and got into a gold truck before high-tailing away.

Police arrested him later that day at an apartment and took a routine inventory of the truck – but discovered a severed head and limbs in the boot, KLAS reported.

The body was determined to be Richard Miller, who by then had been missing for weeks.

A medical examiner also found Miller had several gunshot wounds including one to the head.

Defending Holland in court, his attorney said he was operating a stolen vehicle and didn't know the body parts were in the boot.

But incriminating evidence was discovered by the authorities against the murderer. 

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Police found CCTV footage from November 21, before he was discovered with the severed body parts, that captured Holland buying a saw and bin bags from Home Depot.

Investigators found the same saw and bags alongside Miller's body parts in the open tailgate of the truck Holland was driving, court documents show.

Officials also found that Holland's fingerprints were matched to the items discovered in the trunk.

The court heard that Holland has prior convictions dating back to the 1980s under false names.

Nevada prison records showed Holland used names including John Carl Hall, Phil Whidden, Robert Daniel Lauer, and Steven Tauber.

Records also show a warrant was issued in 2019 for Holland for theft, embezzlement of a motor vehicle, and other unrelated charges.

Prosecutors believe the defendant got into an altercation with Miller that turned violent, resulting in the victim's death.

After a lengthy court battle lasting several months, Holland pleaded guilty to a charge of second-degree murder on Tuesday (19 July), according to documents reviewed by the 8 News Now I-Team.

Negotiations on a possible prison sentence were not included in the documents, but in Nevada second-degree murder can fetch a life sentence.

Holland is due to be sentenced on September 1.

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