Jason Autry testifies in Holly Bobo murder trial entire day
We want to warn you some of the testimony given in court Thursday contains graphic language.
HARDIN COUNTY, Tenn — Day 4 for the trial of Zach Adams, one of the men charged with the 2011 murder, rape and kidnapping of Holly Bobo, a 20-year-old nursing student.
All week, witnesses have testified about what they say happened the day Holly Bobo disappeared and Thursday a key witness in the case took the stand.
After state prosecutors made a surprise shake up on the defense, Thursday morning, calling co-defendant Jason Autry to the stand it was something no one was expecting. That change lead to Autry testifying for more than seven hours, taking up the entire day.
Te first half of the trial, Jason Autry was questioned by state prosecutors. The state brought up a conversation Autry and Zach Adams allegedly had at a gas station two days after Holly Bobo disappeared.
“I asked him a question. I said what you do with that girl he said we throwed her out near Kelly Ridge,” Autry said. “He said that’s not the reason I’m here today he said I’m here over Dylan, Dylan hadn’t been to bed won’t stop running his d**** mouth about this s*** he’s gone get us in trouble.”
Autry explained to the jury how Zach Adams allegedly requested he kill his brother, Dylan Adams.
“He said his grandpa, Dick would probably pass in a few years and if I’d kill Dylan that he’d give me a portion of the money and let me live in one of the houses,” Autry explained.
After a short recess, the defense team began their cross examination by questioning Autry about being addicted to drugs.
Defense Attorney, Jennifer Thompson said “Would you agree with me that your meth habit and your morphine habit were fairly expensive habits?” Autry said “I would.”
The defense brought up conflicting statements Autry made during his testimony, such as him failing to mention bits and pieces of the car ride while they were finding a location to allegedly dispose of the body.
“I’m telling you what a 6 year ago conversation was in the best matter that I can,” Autry said.
Thompson asked Autry does “being high affect his memory?” Autry said, “That and time I guess, so yeah.”
Attorneys also mentioned multiple times, according to cell phone records, Autry’s cell phone pinged near the Tennessee River. Those records showed there pings before and after the date Bobo disappeared. The Tennessee River is where the two men were going to allegedly dispose of Bobo’s body.
“One thing you need to realize is there’s a bar less than a mile from there so it’s possible that I’m at this bar,” Autry said.
Autry testified that he did not recall being near the river at the times Thompson mentioned.
“But that doesn’t explain why you would be there at 10 o’clock in the morning. The bar wouldn’t be open at 10 o’clock in the morning,” Thompson said.
“That’s an old red neck bar, it runs as long as you got money,” Autry responded.
Thompson also raised many questions about why Autry decided to tell his side of the story, when years ago he denied being involved.
“There’s a lot of stress that comes with knowing you have a potential death sentence hanging over your head, isn’t there?,” Thompson asked. Autry responded saying, “That’s correct.”
Autry ended his testimony explaining that he came to tell the jury about what happened, with a hope for leniency on his current sentence.
Jason Autry’s testimony lasted the entire day and even went an extra hour over Judge Creed McGinley’s scheduled time. The trial will resume Friday morning with the next witness. The trial resumes at 9 a.m. in Savannah.
Stay with WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News for gavel-to-gavel coverage in this case.