SAVANNAH, Tenn. - Dylan Adams, the brother of the man convicted of killing nursing student Holly Bobo, admitted to his role in her death on Monday after reaching a plea bargain with the state which ensures he's spends the next 35 years in jail.
The plea deal comes after weeks of back-and-forth between prosecutors and defense attorneys, as they tried to finalize an agreement that satisfied both Holly's family and state prosecutors. Judge Creed McGinley had repeated pushed attorneys to reach a plea deal in the high-profile murder case.
Dylan will now avoid a trial by a jury of his peers.
Dylan had originally faced death penalty for his role in the killing and kidnappings of nursing student Holly Bobo. His brother Zach Adams was convicted of murder in September of 2017 and will now spend the rest of his life in jail
For years it was unclear if Dylan's case would ever come to a close. Legal fumbles and delays often left those in Holly's family wondering when they would be able to close the most painful chapter in their lives.
Holly was 20-years-old when she was kidnaped from her home on April 13, 2011, the last person to see her alive was her brother Clint who told investigators a man wearing camouflage had lead his sister into the wood. Investigators would later find Holly's blood in the garage next to her black Ford Mustang, exhaustive searches of the wooded areas surrounding her home turned up Holly's phone and lunch box but the 20-year-old's body wouldn't be found until years later.
A motive for the crime, which shattered the sense of security in the small town of Parsons, still remains a mystery. But state prosecutors were able to convict Zach Adams based largely on the testimony of other criminals and co-defendant Jason Autry.
It was through Autry's testimony that jurors heard the gruesome details of the final moments of Holly's life. Autry, who is currently in prison, said that after Zach kidnaped Holly, the pair took her body to the banks of the Tennessee River beneath the I40 bridge in Decatur County. Wrapped in a farm blanket, Holly's body was unloaded from the back of a pickup truck, the plan, Autry says, was to gut her body so she wouldn't float. Suddenly though her foot moved, a murmur indicated that Holly was still alive.
It's unclear if a deal with Dylan Adams now means prosecutors will push forward with a jury trial for Autry or if they will also work to reach a plea bargain with him as well.
The most expensive and most exhaustive case in state history also appeared to be one of the most mismanaged. Even prosecutors said that TBI agents failed to investigate the most obvious of leads in the case early on, not checking out the alibis of Zach Adams, Dylan Adams, Jason Autry or Shayne Austin. Three of the men were later charged with murder. Shayne Austin committed suicide after the state withdrew an immunity agreement.
Holly was missing for more than three years until her remains were accidentally discovered off County Corner Road in Decatur County by a ginseng hunter out searching the woods in September of 2014. That discovery broke the case wide open.