Marshals official says sex offender offered to make plea in Holly Bobo case

SAVANNAH, Tenn. — A U.S. Marshals inspector said Wednesday that a jail inmate he interviewed about a missing Tennessee woman said he would plead to charges in the case, a year before another man was charged with her kidnapping and slaying. 

Senior Inspector John Walker testified at Zachary Adams’ trial in Savannah, Tennessee. Adams has pleaded not guilty to kidnapping, raping and killing nursing student Holly Bobo. She was 20 when she disappeared from her home in Parsons on April 13, 2011. Her remains were found in woods 3 ½ years later not far from her Decatur County home, about 100 miles southwest of Nashville. 

Before resting Wednesday afternoon, Adams’ defense tried to poke holes in the prosecution’s case. Jason Autry, who also is charged with kidnapping, raping and killing Bobo, testified that Adams told him he and two other men raped Bobo. Autry said he served as a lookout when Adams shot Bobo by a river. 

Zachary Adams looks back at the crowd during a break in his trial for the kidnapping, rape and murder of nursing student Holly Bobo, on Sept. 11, 2017, in Savannah, Tenn. Bobo, 20, disappeared from her home in Parsons, Tenn. on April 13, 2011, and her remains were found in September 2014.

James Kenney / AP

But defense attorney Jennifer Thompson tried to present alternate suspects, including Terry Britt, who lived near Bobo and had a criminal past.

Under questioning by Thompson, Walker said he interviewed Britt in jail in March 2013. Walker said he told Britt that investigators believed he had kidnapped and harmed Bobo, and disposed of her belongings. Walker said Britt told him “sounds like you have it all figured out” and that he would “plead to it.”

Walker did not elaborate on charges to which Britt said he would plead guilty. Walker said he gave the information to the TBI.

Britt’s home and property had been searched and his phones and home had been under surveillance as part of the Bobo case, but he was never charged in her abduction and he was in jail on a separate charge when Walker interviewed him. Britt is a convicted sex offender stemming from an earlier case.

Adams was charged in March 2014. He faces the death penalty if convicted of first-degree murder.

Also Wednesday, a cellphone design expert testified that Adams’ device and Bobo’s phone were not in the same location until about an hour after she was reporting missing. Jonathan…

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