LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Las Vegas Metropolitan police believe a man dismembered his acquaintance and carried around the pieces for weeks in the back of a truck, the I-Team first reported Monday.
Officers arrested Eric Holland, 57, after he ran from a traffic stop last week, the I-Team first reported last week.
During that stop on Dec. 23, police said they discovered human remains in coolers in one of the stolen trucks he was driving.
Holland had switched trucks during the police chase, eventually stopping at an apartment complex near Rochelle Avenue and Arville Street. Both trucks had been reported stolen, police said.
Two officers stood at Holland’s side as he appeared in court for the first time Monday. He wore restraints covering his hands and was unable to read the charges against him.
“I can’t read it because they broke my glasses, and I don’t have any glasses,” Holland told the judge.
Although Holland is facing a murder charge following the discovery of human remains, his Monday court appearance was on previous charges, including identity fraud, embezzlement and forgery.
According to court documents obtained by the I-Team, Holland is accused of stealing a truck and then selling it to a man in 2018. He is listed as having an Oklahoma driver’s license in that paperwork, but there is no record of Holland living in the state.
Before the chain of events began last Thursday, a patrol officer identified Holland as the driver of a different truck and attempted to arrest him on that active warrant.
As officers were performing inventory on the second truck, which is standard procedure when a vehicle is being impounded, one officer made the gruesome discovery.
“The officer opened up one of the ice chests and discovered a human head inside that ice chest,” Metro homicide Lt. Ray Spencer said.
The severed head was in one chest; pieces of a man’s body in others, Spencer said. The coolers were also wrapped with tape.
“We’ve recovered evidence that shows that he purchased tools that were used to dismember the victim’s body and then placed him into several ice chests that we recovered during the initial arrest,” Spencer said.
The victim is believed to be a man who disappeared in November, Spencer said. The Clark County Coroner’s Office had not identified the man as of Monday afternoon.
The victim and Holland knew each other and Holland was his last known contact, Spencer said.
Holland was scheduled to make his first court appearance on the murder charge Tuesday.
“I mean, you can imagine the horror when you open up an ice chest and you find a human head inside,” Spencer said.
In court, Holland asked for an attorney, saying he had been attempting to get legal aid.
“I’ve been trying to call ever since I got in,” he said.
Holland was being held at the Clark County Detention Center.
Anyone with any information about this incident is urged to contact the LVMPD Homicide Section by phone at 702-828-3521, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 702-385-5555, or at crimestoppersofnv.com.