Father wants evidence retested in cold case

Murder Mystery

BONHAM - Investigators say Jennifer Harris-Holman's murder is laced with sickening details.

"They could have shot her," said Jim Holloway, a private investigator. "They could have stabbed her. They didn't have to do what they did."

Harris-Holman, 28, was Jerry Harris' oldest child. She used to live in Lewisville and co-owned a wellness center in Frisco.

But on Mother's Day in 2002, Harris-Holman was murdered in Fannin County, which was where she had recently moved in with her grandmother. Six days later, fishermen found her nude body in the Red River.

"Justice will never be served because I'm not going to get Jennifer back," Harris said.

Harris, 61, said he thinks his daughter was newly pregnant at the time of her death.

While Harris-Holman's autopsy didn't detail exactly how she died, it revealed a violent killer and an "extremely unusual" crime.

According to the autopsy, her uterus was missing. It is thought to have been removed by the killer.

Now, the Harris-Holman case has gone cold in Fannin County.

Despite thousands of hours of investigation by deputies, the Texas Rangers and the investigators from the Texas Attorney General's Office, no one has ever been charged in her murder.

But Harris said he thinks more can be done. He wants her jeans, blouse and bra - which were found months later with trace amounts of degraded DNA - retested with a new procedure called Y-STR DNA testing. That test was unavailable in 2002.

"It's nothing ventured, nothing gained," he said.

"Technology has changed a lot," Holloway said. "Let's try this again."

In Fort Worth, the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification said it can perform the test only if the Fannin County Sheriff's Office requests it through Texas Department of Public Safety. It's free for law enforcement, a spokesman at the forensics laboratory said.

Jennifer Harris-Holman

Sheriff Kenneth Moore, who keeps part of Harris-Holman's case file in his own office, said he absolutely supports retesting the old evidence.

"We can have that done," he said. "That's just a matter of driving that property that was found down to Dallas."

Moore said it could happen within a week.

Harris and Holloway have their own suspect in mind in Harris-Holman's murder. It's an individual, the sheriff said, who has been interviewed three times over the years, but who has never been charged.

Moore said the motive in the murder is unknown to investigators. It remains Fannin County's only unsolved murder.

The retested DNA could eliminate or incriminate. Either way, it will hopefully crack the cold case that has tortured Jerry Harris for seven years.

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