On Tuesday, Russell County Sheriff Heath Taylor spoke in a press conference alongside Columbus Assistant Police Chief Joyce Dent-Fitzpatrick and Russell County Chief Deputy District Attorney Rick Chancey about the updates in the case. Taylor said Holland’s mother Christie Hoskins called Columbus Police to report her child missing early Monday morning. Hoskins' daughter was reportedly gone when she woke up around 6 a.m., and the front door was open, according to Taylor.
Columbus Police focused on Jeremy Tremaine Williams as a suspect in the case and contacted the Russell County Sheriff’s Office because they had information that he could be in Phenix City, Alabama. Columbus, Georgia, and Phenix City sit just across the Chattahoochee River from each other. Taylor said information led investigators to the Bamboo Hotel, where they found Williams and his uncle.
Taylor said Williams used to live at a residence in Phenix City that was now vacant. Agents went to the residence and found the little girl’s body inside. Taylor said she was deceased, and a preliminary investigation indicated she died from asphyxiation.
The Russell County Sheriff said, "It did appear from the scene that there was some sexual abuse."
Holland’s body was sent for an autopsy, and Taylor said he is hoping they can recover DNA evidence.
Williams was arrested and charged with capital murder. Russell County will be in charge of prosecuting the case. Chancey with the District Attorney’s Office said if Williams is convicted, under Alabama law he faces life in prison without the possibility of parole or the death sentence.
Chancey said, "If the facts turn out to be as we are seeing them unfold…this will be a case in which the death penalty is sought."
According to Taylor, Williams has faced charges in the past regarding children. He was charged with abuse of children in Phenix City in 2009 but was acquitted in 2012. He faced similar charges in Columbus, Georgia, and was also a suspect in a 1-year-old’s death in Alaska but was never charged because of a lack of evidence.
Taylor said it appears Williams and Holland’s mother knew each other. He anticipates additional charges as the case continues to unfold.