Sheriff: Man charged with murder of 5-year-old also linked to previous child abuse cases
RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WTVM) - We’re learning new information about the death of 5-year-old Kamarie Holland. She was found dead in Russell County, Ala. on Monday night after being reported missing from Columbus, Ga. earlier that morning.
37-year-old Jeremy Tremaine Williams has been charged with capital murder in connection to the case.
According to Russell County Sheriff Taylor, the child’s mother reported the 5-year-old missing when she woke up Monday morning at her Bowman Street home in Columbus.
Police were alerted around 6:15 a.m. and a missing person alert for the child was issued later that morning. The mother reportedly told police that she discovered her daughter missing around 5:50 a.m. and the front door of the home was open. Monday night, police canceled that alert - without providing additional information.
Columbus police later developed Williams as a suspect in the kidnapping of Kamarie, the sheriff said. They then alerted Russell County authorities to assist in the investigation.
Williams was found with his uncle at the Bamboo Motel on Opelika Road in Phenix City Monday night. Authorities say he had been there about 30 minutes before the sheriff’s office arrived. Williams is a Phenix City resident, according to officials. The sheriff says the suspect’s uncle is not believed to be an accessory to the crime.
Sheriff Taylor says agents received information that Williams had previously lived in Phenix City at an address that is currently vacant. At that time, the body of 5-year-old Kamarie Holland was found in the 1000 block of 15th Avenue in Phenix City - about six miles from her mother’s home, Russell County Sheriff Heath Taylor revealed at a press conference Tuesday morning.
The Russell County Coroner’s Office pronounced Kamarie Holland dead at 11:15 p.m. Monday.
The child’s cause of death is believed to be asphyxiation and the sheriff also believes the motive was for a sexual encounter. Her body was sent to Montgomery for an autopsy.
It was also revealed that the mother and the suspect knew each other; however, the sheriff says the two were not dating.
Jeremy Tremaine Williams is also involved with several child abuse cases, according to Sheriff Taylor. In 2009, he was charged with abusing children in Phenix City - he was acquitted by a jury in 2012.
He was also previously charged with abuse of a child in Columbus - the status of that case is unknown. He was also a suspect in the death of a 1-year-old in Alaska, but that charge was dropped due to insufficient evidence, the sheriff said.
Sheriff Taylor says additional charges including capital murder during kidnapping and rape are forthcoming.
In Alabama, there are several types of murders that constitute a capital murder charge. In this case, it is capital murder due to the victim being under 14 years old.
The investigation is ongoing by the Russell County Sheriff’s Office and the Columbus Police Department. His first court appearance was Tuesday afternoon.
If convicted, Williams will be facing life without parole or a death sentence.
A GoFundMe has been created to support Kamarie’s family during this difficult time. Click HERE to donate.
Copyright 2021 WTVM. All rights reserved.