Las Vegas Man with Severed Head in Trunk Claims He is ‘Unlucky Car Thief’

Posted on: January 10, 2022, 12:51h. 

Last updated on: January 10, 2022, 01:46h.

A Las Vegas man who was charged with murder after police found a severed head in his truck in a parking garage next to the Rio says it’s not his truck.

eric holland
Eric Holland attempted to outrun police in a vehicle that was stashed with body parts and a severed head, according to a criminal complaint filed in a Las Vegas courtroom last week. (Image: Law and Crime)

A lawyer for Eric Holland, 57, claimed last week his client is a “hapless thief” who stole a vehicle that just happened to have body parts in it, according to court filings.

In the car, police found a detached human head, two legs and “an apparent human torso” in coolers.

That was after Holland was pulled over by Las Vegas Metro Police on Dec. 23 for a routine traffic stop. During the license check, the registration of Holland’s Toyota Tundra was suspended.

High-Speed Chase

During the traffic stop, Holland briefly spoke to officers before speeding off. A chase ensued, and an LVMPD helicopter unit joined to track him from the air, according to the criminal complaint.

During the pursuit, Holland headed for the parking garage by the Rio at 3700 West Flamingo Road. But the air unit saw him get out of the Toyota and enter a gold Chevrolet Avalanche, which then drove out of the garage.

Police resumed the chase of the Chevrolet and followed it to an apartment block near the Orleans Casino. There, Holland exited the vehicle and attempted to run, but was tasered by officers.

With the suspect in custody, police searched the vehicles, both of which had been reported stolen. In the trunk of the Chevy, they found a black plastic trash bag emitting a “foul odor,” according to the complaint.

But according to the public defender assigned to Holland’s case, it’s all just a horrible misunderstanding. P. David Westbrook said his client did not kill anybody. He was just a “hapless car thief who just picked the wrong car.”

A Las Vegas judge denied him bail, just in case that wasn’t true.

“Proof is evident, and the presumption is great that Mr. Holland committed murder,” the judge said.

Caught on Tape

According to the complaint, LVMPD has a video of Holland inside a Home Depot buying a saw and trash bags.

The Clark County Coroners Office has named the victim as Richard P. Miller, 65, of Las Vegas. He died of multiple gunshot wounds. Police believe Holland and Miller knew each other.

Holland, who has a long criminal history, has yet to enter a plea in the case. He is being held at the Clark County Detention Center.