Jailhouse Informant Possible Key New Witness In Holly Bobo Murder Case

FRANKLIN, Tenn. - Stunning new information has come out in the Holly Bobo murder case.

One of the prime suspects, Zach Adams, has been talking behind bars.

What did he tell a fellow inmate and why is the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation interested?

This jailhouse informant could now be a key witness when this high-profile case finally goes to trial.

"He's definitely going to be called as a witness and he could be the star witness," said NewsChannel 5 Legal Analyst Nick Leonardo.

Three men, Zach Adams, his brother Dylan, and Jason Autry, have been charged with killing the nursing student five years ago.

If convicted, they face the death penalty.

This fellow inmate of Adams could play a key role at trial.

"The defense will try to attack this guy's credibility, but the state will probably want to use him," said Leonardo.

Benjamin Lee Hendricks, age 39, is a convicted sex offender serving time in Williamson County.

That very same jail has been home to Zack Adams.

NewsChannel 5 confirmed the two inmates did have access to each other.

Hendricks talked with Adams, and now we know the TBI has talked with Hendricks.

"Loose lips sink ships, and a lot of these times people who are incarcerated talk about why they are here and facts of their case," said Leonardo.

So what story did Adams tell?

Hendricks sent a letter -- unsolicited -- to NewsChannel 5 outlining the very graphic conversations.

He wrote that he "... spent months next to Zack Adams."

And that Adams told him "... the following disturbing information" about what happened to Holly Bobo:

Adams "... stated that about a few days before she died Holly was at his house with his brother Dylan and ..." Jason Autry.

"After this Zack and Jason planned to kidnap and rob Holly for money to get drugs. Zack said when Holly didn't have much money Jason got mad and started beating on Holly."

The three sexually assaulted Holly before shooting her.

"Then they dumped her body by some woods close to Zack's house."

"That's really horrific, and my heart goes out to the victim's family whether that's true or not true," said Leonardo who added that Hendrick's credibility has been an issue.

Yes, he could have made up the story -- based on news reports -- in hopes of getting something in return.

Hendricks does have a pending civil rights lawsuit against the Williamson County Jail in federal court.

But prosecutors have questioned him and could still call him.

"They have an individual that they can call to court and tell what he was told by one of the defendants, and the jury can decide if they believe him," said Leonardo.

This was not be the first time a jailhouse informant in Williamson County played an important role in a high profile case.

Remember Nathan Farris, the inmate with a question mark on his neck? He played a key role in the Janet March murder case a decade ago.

Farris first wore a wire in the Davidson County Jail recording incriminating conversations with prime suspect Perry March.

Farris then moved to the Williamson County Jail. His testimony helped convict Perry March.

Could Hendrick's do the same with the Bobo suspects?

"Inmates will say anything," said John Herbison.

He was Perry March's attorney. He has now been representing Jason Autry -- one of the three suspects in the Bobo case.

There are no tape recordings this time, and Herbison doubts Hendricks' truthfulness.

"Looks to me as though this fellow was well coached," said Herbison.

Still, Hendricks could be very important to the prosecution's case.

"I think he's going to be a witness. He's going to be subpoenaed to trial," said Leonardo. "You have multiple defendants and no one is saying anything, and then Mr. Adams is giving his play-by-play account allegedly to this individual."

If the case goes to trial, there's a good chance the jury is going to want to hear it.

Zack Adam's attorneys and the TBI declined to comment on Hendricks' possible involvement in the case.

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