A Dakota County jury on Tuesday found an Apple Valley man guilty of murdering his wife and their unborn child, the Dakota County Attorney’s Office announced early Tuesday morning.
Roger Earl Holland, 37, was found guilty of two counts of first-degree murder and two counts of second-degree murder for the death of his wife, 37-year-old Margorie Ann Holland, and their unborn child.
The conviction comes after a two-week trial and a jury deliberation of about 10 hours.
“We are pleased to have brought Roger Holland to justice for this senseless and violent crime that took the lives of Margorie Holland and her unborn child,” a news release quoted Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom. “Our deep sympathy is extended to the family and friends of Marjorie Holland for their great loss.”
Holland pushed his wife down the stairs of their Apple
Valley townhome in March. She was 15 weeks pregnant.
The couple both served in the Minnesota National Guard. Holland told police that at the time of the incident, he was out picking up breakfast, according to a complaint filed by the Dakota County Attorney's Office.
However, a suspicious Internet search, a scan of text messages on his phone and evidence at the scene pointed to foul play and a relationship that was rocky and on the verge of ending. Days before the incident, Margorie Holland had texted her husband asking for a divorce.
Backstrom noted that first- and second-degree murder of an unborn child under Minnesota law requires a jury to find that the accused “had intent to kill the unborn child, or did so with premeditation, provided the defendant intended to kill the unborn child’s mother and did so with premeditation.”
Sentencing has been set for 1 p.m. Dec. 17.