Family says Holli Jeffcoat 'deserves justice' after stepfather a - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Family says Holli Jeffcoat 'deserves justice' after stepfather arrest

James Bryant Holland James Bryant Holland
Holli Jeffcoat was 18 Holli Jeffcoat was 18
Authorities say someone set a fire in this house to cover the murder Authorities say someone set a fire in this house to cover the murder
LUBBOCK COUNTY, TX (KCBD) -

An arrest warrant released by Lubbock County authorities reveals new details about the murder of an Idalou special needs student and the arrest of her stepfather.

Lubbock County Sheriff's deputies arrested 39-year-old James Bryant Holland, Holli's step-father on Thursday night. He has been charged with continued aggravated sexual assault of a child. The charge is not for abuse against Jeffcoat, but for another underage person.

According to Holland's arrest warrant, the abuse spanned several years.

Authorities say that Holland is being investigated for Jeffcoat's murder but he has not yet been charged. They say they do expect to file more charges against him.

Jeffcoat was found stabbed to death in her home in February of this year. Investigators say the killer tried to cover up the crime by starting a fire.

Court documents show that Jeffcoat told Lorenzo High School officials that she was being sexually abused and was pregnant. CPS started an investigation back in January. And the court granted a protective order for Jeffcoat's younger sibling late last month, preventing Holland from having any contact with her.

Family member Ashley Waxler says when she found out Jeffcoat's step father had been arrested.

"I had this huge smile on my face and I ran in the house and I said they arrested him they arrested him," Waxler said. "I mean I was jumping up and down."

CPS started an investigation back in January and Jeffcoat's younger sibling was removed from the home late last month, preventing Holland from having any contact with her.

"She deserves justice and so does her sister," Waxler said.

She said the family was beyond shocked when they heard the news.

"I just couldn't believe anyone could do anything like that to anybody," she said. "She was only 18 years old! She had a long life to live and she only got to live just a little bit of it."

Waxler started a Facebook Page, Justice For Holli Jeffcoat and says they've received an outpouring of support.

"There's people all over the United States that follow the page there's friends that have contacted me on the page," she said. "They absolutely loved her."

She said she started the page so people can follow this story and help be a voice.

Meanwhile, they say struggle with anger over Holli's senseless and violent death.

"We hope that he spends the rest of his life in prison and we can't thank the LSO enough I mean I know they're working hard on this case."

We're now hearing for the first time from one of the neighbors of Holli Jeffcoat, after the news broke that her step-father was arrested last night on charges of continued aggravated sexual assault of a child.

“I drive by there, every time I come back from Lubbock. And just look at it and wonder how this could happen around here,” Russell Shannon said.

Russell Shannon is a long time Idalou resident, living just down the road from the home Holli Jeffcoat was found stabbed to death back in February.

He can recall that morning, when he knew something wasn’t right.

“I saw the ambulance coming it was about 5:45, 6:00 and I saw that it turned and it sopped down there,” he said. “It was just really mysterious to all of us neighbors around here as to what was going on because there was so many policemen over there.”

As a neighbor, he had several conversations with Holland and Jeffcoat’s mother

“I met him and he one time in the grocery store up here and just seemed like a normal man to me,” Shannon said.

With Thursday night’s news that Holli’s step father is now behind bars, Shannon says it was disturbing.

But he was also relieved.

Especially for the safety of his ten year old grandson who lives with him.

“To get a person like that off the streets, it’s just a relief,” he said. “Maybe we don’t have to worry for a little while.”

But along with this news, Shannon says he and other neighbors still have many questions, and concerns.

“It’s just, it’s horrific,” he said. “To think about what the little girl went through before her death.”

And as a grandfather and father figure to his grandson, he feels for the emotional pain this family is going through.

“God be with you. You didn’t deserve this. The girl didn’t deserve that,” Shannon said. “Maybe God will help somehow, relieve some of your pain.”

Holland is now in jail on a $2 million bond. We want to point out that right now he has not been charged in Jeffcoat's death.

RELATED STORIES:

RAW VIDEO: Stepfather of murdered teen arrested

Holli Jeffcoat reported sexual abuse, told school she was pregnant weeks before deadly stabbing      

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