Arrest made in November murder: Police say Irving man killed Plano resident
A jailhouse informant has led to the arrest of an Irving man in connection with the Nov. 10 murder of 50-year-old Plano resident Billy Joe Tanner.
Christopher James Holder, 28, was arrested Wednesday and charged with Tanner's murder. Holder was interviewed shortly after the crime occurred but was not arrested until Thomas Uselton, an inmate at the Tarrant County Jail, told detectives he was present when Holder killed Tanner.
According to the probable cause affidavit, Holder was the ex-boyfriend of Tanner's daughter and previously lived at Tanner's home in the 3100 block of Royal Oaks Drive. The daughter told police she kicked Tanner out of the home prior to the murder.
The affidavit states that Holder told Uselton he killed Tanner because Tanner was a child molester, something Tanner's family denied when they spoke with police after the murder. Police said the two men attempted to burn the body to destroy the evidence but failed.
To make it appear robbery was the motive, Tanner's truck, wallet, cell phone and laptop computer were also missing, the affidavit reads. The truck was eventually recovered in an Irving parking garage.
Detectives used cell phone records to place Holder's cell phone in the vicinity of the crime scene at the time of the murder. Holder explained this by saying he was in Plano "trying to score dope." His statement was backed up by another of Holder's ex-girlfriends but not by Uselton.
Holder is being held at the Collin County Detention Center on capital murder charges. His bond is set at $1 million. Uselton has not been charged in the case, but Plano PD spokesman David Tilley said charges could be forthcoming.