A scheduled court hearing on Friday (Nov. 15) for accused child killer Zachary Holly will be rescheduled because his defense lawyers have “an unavoidable scheduling conflict,” said Van Stone, Benton County prosecuting attorney.
A new date for the motions hearing has not been set, but that delay will not require Holly’s scheduled trial date on April 15 to be reset, Stone said.
Holly remains in the Benton County Jail, charged with capital murder, kidnapping, rape and burglary in the death of 6-year-old Jersey Bridgeman on Nov. 20, 2012. She would have been 7 years old this year on Nov. 14, according to a Facebook page dedicated to her memory.
At his Jan. 7, 2013, arraignment, Holly pleaded not guilty to the charges against him. Not guilty pleas are customary at arraignments to allow the case to proceed in the court system.
Stone said he will seek the death penalty against Holly in the case.
Jersey lived at 608 S.E. A St. in Bentonville with her mother, who called the police early in the morning on Nov. 20 to report her daughter was missing. Officers found Jersey’s body fewer than 15 minutes later, in a vacant house two door down at 704 S.E. A St. The child died of asphyxiation, according to an affidavit of probable cause released by authorities.
The probable cause affidavit states Holly and his wife, who lived next door to the Bridgemans, babysat Jersey the night of her death while the child’s mother, DesaRae Bridgeman, and her boyfriend were working at a nearby convenience store.
A swab test on Jersey’s body showed traces of sperm, according to the affidavit. Holly consented to cheek swabs for DNA comparison. He also gave authorities clothes he had worn since going to bed the night of Jersey’s death, the report states.
While searching for Jersey, an officer noticed the back door to 704 S.E. A St. was open. Jersey’s body was found minutes later inside the vacant house.