What AlterNet and Ryan Holle’s other supporters are neglecting to tell you.

Ryan Holle is a Criminal, not an Innocent Bystander.

I’m sick of seeing this bullshit story by AlterNet. They claim this gentleman went to prison for life because he “lent his car to a friend and then went to bed”. I will agree that is factually correct, so why am I calling it bullshit?

I’m calling this bullshit because AlterNet is deliberately giving a false impression by phrasing their facts in a devious way. Ironically if Fox News did this in a story AlterNet would scream like hell, but hey I guess it’s okay when it’s done for the right reasons?

Consider this sentence: “John Hinkley shot Ronald Reagan, who later died.” Is there anything untruthful in that statement? No. But if you knew nothing else of the incident what would you think the cause of Reagan’s death was? This is the same thing AlterNet is doing.

The AlterNet story claims Mr. Holle “…lent his car to his roommate and went to sleep. He had lent his car to his roommate many times before with no negative consequences.”

They go on to say the roomates, “…and others went to a house where they knew a woman was selling marijuana from a safe. They planned to get the marijuana, but in the course of their break-in a teenage girl was killed.”

So after reading the AlterNet coverage of the story you would think that Mr. Holle’s friends asked to borrow his car, perhaps to pick up some beer or snacks from a local 7-11, and went to bed. When he awoke he was shocked to find a “burglary” had been committed with his car, and that a teenage girl had been bludgeoned to death during the burglary.

The truth is Ryan Holle knew his car was being used in the burglary/robbery of a drug dealer, AND he knew that the burglars planned to beat the people in the house. So he knew he was participating in a violent crime, one that any reasonable person should have known could end in a death.

Here is a link to a 2004 AP story that makes that clear.

Here is a link to Mr. Holle’s Wikipedia entry.

The true irony here….

The true irony here is that AlterNet, and others pushing this “pure as the driven snow” narrative, are not helping, in my opinion. I agree life without parole is probably too steep a price to pay. But once I realize I am being lied to I lose any interest I had in Mr. Holle’s plight.

I would agree the felony murder rule is too strict and leads to injustice, but I don’t like being lied to.


For those asking for more sources please see the Google News Archives. The Sarasota Herald Tribune of December 5, 2007 has a good article. I can’t link directly to the particular article but it is easy to find by the paper name and date once you are in the archives.

This very brief story from 2004 doesn’t have much detail, but does make it clear that Holle was convicted because the jury thought he had prior knowledge of the robbery: http://www.wjhg.com/news/headlines/904287.html

This NY Times article makes states that Holle made statements to the police admitting prior knowledge, but that he later claimed he thought it was a “joke”. Note they admit that the statements exist while down playing them and advocating for Mr. Holle’s release, a little more honest than AlterNet wouldn’t you say?

To be fair to AlterNet I should also point out that the article is originally from The Nation magazine, and was reprinted in AlterNet. I’m picking on AlterNet because their reprint is getting all the attention on the web. The Nation is mostly read by aging hippies who pick it up at the macro biotic food co-op on the way home from a drum circle.


  1. Dick Charles says:

    You’re a cunt. Even if he did know about the break in he should’ve got 2 years max. The parents are more guilty of this than he is, they shouldn’t have been dealing.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      I made it clear that I am not saying his sentence is just, I am saying I don’t like being lied to by AlterNet. I also don’t think dealing weed should be punishable by death. Edit to add: When did “cunt” become an insult? That’s my favorite part!

      • WhatAStupidArticle says:

        Your story is just as bullshit as you seem to claim the AlterNet story to be. You begin with “I’m sick of seeing this bullshit story by AlterNet” which in itself is a gross exaggeration of your issue with the article. The article is not bullshit, it has solid concrete facts that an archaic law was used in the extreme against a deer-in-the-headlights young man who had his life taken away in one day. The bottom line is that this was a complete injustice and you are a bullshiter for calling bullshit on them for stating their opinion. your article is JUST AS SLANTED IF NOT MORE than the AlterNet article. Get off your goddamn high horse and realize what happened here…a young man had his life taken away because he lent his car to a friend.

        ” I agree life without parole is probably too steep a price to pay. But once I realize I am being lied to I lose any interest I had in Mr. Holle’s plight.”
        the fact that you said PROBABLY made me lose a lot of respect for whoever this high-horsed author is. You live in the LAST developed nation to still hold the felony murder law and the reason for all the others abandoning it is because bullshit cases such as these ruin the lives of people who had NO INTENT. To be quite honest i don’t give a shit if you believe AlterNet slanted their view, god damn right it should be slanted. If you are going to call them LIARS for slanting it then grow a pair and realize you’re slanting it as well.

        So go ahead and lose interest in the case. If one slanted article makes you lose interest then i guess you will have some serious problems finding some issues to be interested in. Hard to not slant some views when you’re dealing with the famous justice system of “the greatest country on earth”, yeaaaahhhh riiiiight. Congratz on writing off a kid who as AlterNet said, “lent his car to a friend and then went to bed”, only to wake up later and find the idiots had murdered her. If anyone in the court gave a shit about this obviously under-privilidged young man then they would have held him at the MOST as accountable as the drug dealer (even with the felony murder charge). Stupid article, obviously written by someone supports FOX (given your little “ooo fox would have been getting shit for this” – type comment) and should hold no weight to anyone with a few brain cells up there. Do everyone a favour, lose interest as you said you had and don’t post anything about this again.

      • Hector says:

        I would like to know how did you come to find out that he new that he was lending his car for a robbery? Because unless you know him or was at his house when he loan his car to his friends you have no idea what really happened. Your assuming that he new but its not a fact.

        • Marcy Snyder says:

          How can I upload statements I am the sister! My parents were not and are not drug dealers and he knew! None of you are gettin the right facts this is all bull crap!! Let me be able to upload Ryan holle statements and also William Allen jr statements confirming Ryan knew! And gave them bandanas!

      • robbie says:

        So why aren’t the parents of the daughter also in jail for life because if they didn’t sell drugs this also wouldn’t of happened

      • Jake says:

        You are a fucking asshole. This poor kid should not have served a day. Its vindictive pricks like you who make for a nasty, revenge driven society.

      • Joseph says:

        You know people who call other people names to make their point just show their ignorance! At no time in this article did the writer agree with the sentence, but I do and I’m going to explain why. What if 4 of my friends sat you know what we’re going to go to the local mall and just shoot everybody because we hate what everybody stands for so can we borrow your car,and I say ok hahaha go ahead I’m going to bed then they go out and slaughter 50 people, no car no crime I would be just as guilty as them and because 50 people died there would be no sympathy for me but same situation only difference is just one innocent teenage girl died the truly innocent one, but what if instead of 1 it was 50 or a toddler or even a baby or god forbid what if it was your child that was beaten to death would you still have sympathy for this POS he even admits they talked about it and he thought they were joking but I bet when he realized they killed someone that’s when the joking story comes in. If I loan my car to someone I know that person real well they would have to be someone I’ve known for like forever to give my prized possession up too so he knew they weren’t joking he was just too chickenshit to join them but he did his part by providing the car to get there and getaway so he is right where he belongs let him rot there for the rest of his life!!!

    • Courtney says:

      He knew that his friends were going to commit a violent robbery. He knew that his friends were planning to knock out the woman whom they planned to rob. He knew what they were going to steal from her. He knew that they were going to use his car to commit the crime.

      What I’ve not found explicitly stated, but what I deduce from my knowledge of young men who do stupid things, is that he would have received some of the stolen goods as compensation for the use of his car.

      So he had prior knowledge of the crime, he (probably) stood to gain from the crime, and he assisted in the commission of the crime.

      He is guilty of felony murder.

      He bears at least partial responsibility for the death of a young woman. Is that two years’ max?

      • Jack says:

        I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt only that he knew they were going to steal some weed. However, the likely scenario here is “we’re going to go steal some weed and I’m taking your car to do it.” It’s not “We’re going to steal some weed and murder an 18 year old.” What more likely happened is they want to steal the weed and unknowingly ran into the girl and then an argument/encounter occurred in which the woman was killed with a weapon found in the house. If the intent was murder, then they would have brought the weapon with them. That leads me to believe that there was no intent for the crime to be any more than a petty robbery, so if you are going to assign blame then you assign it to the intent, which was robbery. What happened beyond the intent should not be relevant.

        For example, if you found out your boyfriend was cheating on you and you asked your friend to borrow her car so you could go confront him and his mistress, then your friend’s intent is to enable you to confront your boyfriend. If you then got there and got into an argument and grabbed a knife in the house and killed the boyfriend and the mistress, there’s no rational explanation to change your friend whose car you borrowed with murder. Actually, it’s insane to even consider. But I could sure say “no car, no murder” under the same interpretation of the law.

        My point is only that they should look at intent and not what escalated beyond the intent.

        • TrueCrimeTime says:

          My gaster is truly flabbered by these sorts of comments. Giving me the benefit of what doubt? I am trying to point out that AlterNet and other supporters are leaving out important details to tell a better story. You can form whatever opinion you want about those details, I could not care less.

        • LalaLaw says:

          Felony murder is a charge that relates to the participants intent to commit a felony. If upon commission of that felony, someone is killed, even accidentally, the participants in the felony can be charged with felony murder. Because but for their commission of the felony, whoever was killed would not have been killed. Thus, if Mr. Holle knew that his car was being used for the commission of a crime (in this case a felony) he could usually be charged as a conspirator. In this case, someone was shot and killed during the commission of the crime, which is felony murder and therefore he was a participant in felony murder.

          I agree that the punishment here doesn’t fit the crime. A sentence of 1-10 years seems more appropriate to me, but his acquiescence in the crime does give him culpability in felony murder. I am in favor of felony murder laws because there should be greater accountability if someone is killed during the commission of a crime. It is foreseeable that if you commit a felony, someone could get hurt or killed by your actions, even unintentionally and that you are legally responsible.

        • William Wilson says:

          the intent was to commit a felony robbery.. if in the commission of a crime someone dies whether or not it is on purpose ore accidental all persons involved are guilty of murder.
          by the legal definition this was guilty and deserved his punishment.

      • William says:

        “He knew that his friends were going to commit a violent robbery. He knew that his friends were planning to knock out the woman whom they planned to rob. He knew what they were going to steal from her. He knew that they were going to use his car to commit the crime.”

        Really? Even the prosecution wasn’t able to make that case, except by opinion. What is your basis for coming to this definitive conclusion? Was it based on anything by a knee-jerk reaction to this article? I’m not saying he didn’t know, but as far as I’ve been able to tell, no one could verify he had any knowledge of it.

        “What I’ve not found explicitly stated, but what I deduce from my knowledge of young men who do stupid things, is that he would have received some of the stolen goods as compensation for the use of his car.”

        So because you have “knowledge of young men who do stupid things”, you’ve concluded that he made a deal for loaning out his car in exchange for drugs or money? I hope you never have to serve on a jury, if you jump to conclusions with zero evidentiary support.

        “So he had prior knowledge of the crime, he (probably) stood to gain from the crime, and he assisted in the commission of the crime.

        He is guilty of felony murder.”

        You’ve claimed several things. Let’s check them out.

        #1 He had prior knowledge of the crime.
        -> Zero evidence to back this up, determined by your personal knowledge of what stupid men do. Wow.
        #2 He (probably) stood to gain from the crime.
        -> Zero evidence, wild speculation.
        #3 He assisted in commission of the crime.
        -> Zero evidence, and a flat-out lie. The fact that he was at home in bed is not in dispute. For him to have “assisted”, we’d have to prove he knew what they would do.

        People seriously need to actually use the space between their ears. Note that I’m not saying it’s impossible for him to have known about the entire matter, but only that there is no evidence to support such a claim. Stating as fact that he knew what they were doing, stood to benefit, and was complicit is a disgusting thing to do, given the lack of evidence to support these claims.

        • TrueCrimeTime says:

          A: I did not reach a definitive conclusion, I said that some popular news stories that are pushing this story are leaving out pertinent details. My source for his fore knowledge is the words that came out of his own mouth. He even restated some of it during a Fox News interview in recent years. You can Google his name along with Fox News Interview and find the original video fairly easily.

          • William says:

            I was actually responding to the poster Courtney, quoting her statements. If it has been determined and verified that he had prior knowledge of the crime, that would be sufficient to then justify his incarceration. I was replying to this nonsense:

            “What I’ve not found explicitly stated, but what I deduce from my knowledge of young men who do stupid things, is that he would have received some of the stolen goods as compensation for the use of his car.”

            If someone states that he’s guilty and provides specific, compelling evidence, I have nothing to argue about. When someone makes statements because they “know” about men who do stupid things, I feel like I’m talking to a child.

            If there is compelling evidence that he knew his car would be used in a crime, then that should be easy enough to present.

          • TrueCrimeTime says:

            I’m sorry. I see the comments in the admin console and forget they may be part of a string. Conclusions: A: I am a dumb ass. B: I am no longer commenting on this here topic.

          • William says:

            Don’t sweat it. I’ve responded to the wrong post in discussions before.

    • Nate says:

      You’re an asshole. You know damn well he doesn’t deserve life in prison. AlterNet was trying to help someone he is serving an unjust sentence. You just want to write your little annoying blog and keep Ryan Holle in prison, because any sane person knows he should be free. And you sir, would be fighting just as hard for freedom had this situation come in to your life.

      • LalaLaw says:

        I think to go a step further, if one wants to make an argument for clemency or lenience on behalf of Mr. Holle, one has to acknowledge that there was indeed wrong-doing on his part. To blatantly step over critical facts in case, such as his intent to loan a vehicle in support of a commission of a crime diminishes one’s credibility advocating on Mr. Halle’s behalf. He did wrong, but he doesn’t deserve life. Punishment should fit the crime.

    • Marcy Snyder says:

      I am the little sister of Jessica Snyder. Little do you know my parents were not drug dealers they did a very thorough investigation on my mom and concluded there was no evidence of dealing or distributing. She did however get a five year sentence which is the max amount of time for the amount of marijuana in her possession. She felt the guilt she found what was left of my sister that day and she served her time! All of these blogs and supporters of Ryan and the bashing of my mother is wrong they are wrong! I have all the original statement showing he knew what they were going to do with his car and he directed them to where his bandanas were to wear on their faces. Also statements from William Allen Jr. confirming those facts. I was twelve and sat through all of it ..people need to get their facts straight!!

      • Misty stroud says:

        I dont give a shit if he knew what they were doing and still borrowed them his car he wasent there and didnt do felony murder is a bullshit law and needs to be abolished

  2. DEFENDS says:

    One of the great things about this country is our right to express conflicting opinions. Thank you for posting this. It’s the right thing to do. Misinformation is rampant and when you find it you should let people know. Unless you sat on the jury and heard all of the evidence, you don’t know the whole story. I think it’s a comical that we on the outside make decisions on what was appropriate based on internet propaganda or news stories. I’m glad we have a justice system that gives you an opportunity to present your case and be judged by something that resembles a peer group. I’m glad that we have freedom of the press to exchange information. I believe that you are not a cunt and that it takes guts to not jump on the anti governmental bandwagon blindly. Not being a fan of the government myself, I think it erodes any push for change when you lace erroneous and inflammatory information in a “report” or article. As for my opinion based only on what I’ve read, I think that if he loaned the primary suspects his car knowing that they were going to rob someone and beat them, that he is culpable and should be punished equally. This would make him a conspirator and equally responsible just as if he loaned them a gun and they shot her. That’s only my opinion, but it’s got to be at least as good as arbitrarily assigning a 2 year sentence based on internet research and calling someone a cunt. lol

    • This one guy says:

      “Unless you sat on the jury and heard all of the evidence, you don’t know the whole story.”

      I would say that even then you don’t know the whole story.

  3. ex fl d.o.c. says:

    I’ve recently been released from a 5 year sentence after a night similar but entirely different from this kids and i now have alot of insight from the wrong side of the fl justice system… but after reading this i would guess none of these kids were very wealthy ( hence the robbery )and after being incarcerated he probably did not have money for his bail and more often than not… no private representation in the courts which usually gets u reamed pretty good, but if he had knowledge they were going to “beat” the victims and there was a full fledged crime planned in his presence then he was guilty and i would go as far as to say he should be punished within a REASONABLE guideline based on the extent of what he knew was planned… agree? but a life sentence is too steep a punishment for most crimes and the d.o.c. is filled now with kids from 12 to old men about to die that wont get out and they get put right along with the people going home tomorrow (murderers with people that drove without license), i would say that maybe 8 yrs would be appropriate for what i have seen as far as evidence ( I’m sure they blew his trial out of proportion with photos as if he did it himself and his council probably allowed without an attempt to strike it) if you had interest in this kids story and feel that the life sentence is extreme then there is no way you should “lose any interest” in his situation because it has not changed and he is still living that sentence day by day minute by minute! it wasn’t even his story how could that effect your support of saving his life so drastically that you just as soon throw it away… crazy! ( JUST SAYING )

  4. Calvin says:

    Did the mother have enough weed to distribute? Isn’t dealing a felony? Can any dealer deny the risk of being robbed by drug hungry idiots? No car no murder was used in prosecution and dude gets life! No weed no murder!!!! She gets 3 years???

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      It’s just as against the law to kill a weed dealer as it is anyone else. Anyhow the point of the article is not the justness, injustness of his term relative to anyone else’s. The point is that AlterNet is deliberately mis-leading people. Even if I agree with a cause I don’t agree with being dishonest. And ask yourself this; what would AlterNet say if Fox News or The Wall Street Journal used similar tactics in a story about AlterNet? Then I’ll bet it wouldn’t be so acceptable to leave half the story out.

    • Michael Taylor says:

      I’m going to have to agree with you Calvin. In all actuality, 1 1/2 miles is short enough of a distance to walk. The car was just a convenience for them. “No car, no murder” is a garbage accusation. If the mother hadn’t been selling narcotics, no one would have robbed her. She was commiting a felony when a murder occured as well.

      To the author, I see what you are saying about the misinformation. Either way, people have come to the article and will probably still debate the decision, since the article was written about a controversial trial.

    • Marcy Snyder says:

      No she did not and they did an investigation and found she was not a dealer. She was charged with possession. My mother found my sister and felt the guilt it was her first daughter! and she did her time. I was twelve I lost my sister and then my mother when she went to prison! You all don’t know all the facts!! And what’s out there is not the truth!

      • jack says:

        i think the kid got the right charge, but i am wondering one thing.

        why did she have a pound of pot if she wasn’t selling it? that’s a lot of pot.

        • Debbie says:

          I was wondering the same thing, why so much pot if she was dealing? And how did these guys know about the pot, if she wasn’t dealing? Maybe she wasn’t…maybe she just smoke A LOT of pot…I’m just curious.

  5. liz says:

    So wait….did he say that he knew what they were going to do? Or is this just an assumption? Because I don’t know about everyone else but if a close friend asks me to use my car and they have a lot in the past, then i’m not going to be nosy and ask where they are taking it. I agree that if he did indeed know what they were going to do then he is an accomplice, but shouldn’t be there for life. But if he didn’t know, then the only crime he committed is trusting the wrong people.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      He gave both statements to the police and testified in court saying he knew the drug house would be robbed and that people “may” be assaulted. I thought that was pretty clear in the article. The post isn’t really about his crime or punishment, it’s about the way AlterNet is leaving out pertinent information to make a better story.

  6. alex says:

    It’s still very debatable that he bad knowgledge of any crime was going to be committed. Though he may have said his friends were talking about a robbery, being in an intoxicated state of mine his total judgement was off. The point that alt truth is trying to make is the justice system is too harsh on some while allowing others to be set free. The mother selling the weed was just as responsible for the murder, if not more then holle. She put her family at risk and due to her criminal behavior, her daughter is dead. And who’s to say the other’s wouldn’t have stolen a car or even walk to the house. And still, apon reading the alt truth, I decided to dig more into this, case. Its a sad case either way but holle should not need to spend the rest of his life behind bars especially with so little evidence and no priors.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      It is very debatable here, not one AlterNet. The point of the post is that AlterNet, and many other supporters of Mr. Holle, are leaving out pertinent facts to make a better story. I’m no fan of the NY Times, but if you read this story: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/04/us/04felony.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0 you will see that they manage to advocate for Mr. Holle in a more honest fashion. They still don’t mention that he testified in court to knowing about the robbery and violence in advance, but they at least acknowledge that he told the police he had prior knowledge.

      Let me ask you this: If the main stream media lies or distorts news, and alternative sites like AlterNet lie and distort news, what are they the alternative to? What purpose do they serve?

    • Geoff says:

      While it was debatable that he had knowledge or not, it was debated, and it has now been decided by a legal fact finder(the jury) who heard lots of evidence and determined by a reasonable doubt that he had knowledge( making him an accomplice) of a plans to commit a felony, which he aided and resulted in a homicide(felony murder). Sentencing can vary, is discretionary, but probably is based on other similar felony murder convictions.

  7. Jess says:

    I’m not going to comment on the case because I haven’t done enough research to argue one way or the other. However, using Wikipedia as a cite is not a good idea at all. Anyone can edit these articles and put whatever they want in it. Yes, a lot of it may be true but there is no definitive way of knowing what is true and what isn’t.

    Also, and maybe I read something incorrectly, but neither of those links state that he knew what they were going to do with the car…

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      You are correct, you did read something incorrectly.

      • lyss says:

        I feel like I should clarify what a few others have pointed out – both the North Carolina article and his Wikipedia entry have *other* people claiming outright that he knew exactly what was going to happen. In the North Carolina article, it is the Assistant State Attorney who claims that Holle knew what would happen. In any case, the prosecution typically tries to make the defense look as guilty as possible, but that doesn’t necessarily make their words true- in the New York Times article, the prosecution even said that he didn’t consider Holle to be as culpable as the others. The North Carolina article also says that the Defense Attorney claimed that Holle did not know what would happen. Never does that article recount what he himself said, one way or the other.
        The Wikipedia page corroborates that the prosecution claimed he had prior knowledge, and it also adds that his roommate implied that Holle knew what he and the others had planned: “[William] Allen said in a pretrial deposition that all Holle did ‘was to say, ‘Use the car.’ I mean, nobody really knew that girl was going to get killed. It was not in the plans to go kill somebody, you know.'” It has also been noted that Holle had been drinking heavily prior to lending out his car, which is likely to have impacted his understanding of what was going on at the time. He claims to have thought they were joking when stealing a local dealer’s stash was mentioned – this would make sense had he been in an inebriated state.
        I’m not saying that I lean one way or another, but right, wrong, or indifferent, neither of those two articles actually prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he had a full understanding of the situation. They say some things that could go one way and some that could go another way, but at face value (which is all it can really be taken at for us outsiders), it is inconclusive. Sorry to pick it apart like that, but I’m a Sec Ed./English major, so it’s force of habit.

        • TrueCrimeTime says:

          But none of this is mentioned in the AlterNet article. In the AlterNet article a purely innocent man went to be and awoke to murder charges from a robbery he knew nothing about. Now maybe that’s true, but he was clearly convicted of knowing. The judge and jury thought he knew, so you would think an honest article would at least mention that. When The NY Times covered the story they did, yet they still advocated strongly for Holle.

  8. FOXNEWS-sucks says:


    Yes the media can lie, and they can slant any story they like. I would quit paying attention to crappy news outlets if it bothers you.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      The way to solve problems is to ignore them? Or is it that “alternative media” (whatever that is) should be held to a lower standard that other media?

  9. Greg Tobin says:

    Your article was either poorly researched or poorly reported. Your main point is that AlterNet censored information that Holle knew that the events would take place and that he testified to this in court. But the AP article that you claim as evidence of this shows no mention of this whatsoever and your only other “research” is a wikipedia page, a very unreliable source. I don’t understand why you feel the need to demonize fox news when you are doing the same exact thing that they do – making up “truths” without citing any source to back up your statements.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      Here is some more “research” if you like. Pray tell, what research did you do other than reading the AlterNet article, before coming to your conclusions?

      This NY Times article states that he “made statements to the police” that he knew a drug house was to be robbed: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/04/us/04felony.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
      This article from his sentencing makes it clear the judge and jury were convicting him of prior knowledge: http://www.staugustine.com/stories/051405/sta_3078101.shtml
      The Sarasota Herald Tribune for December 5, 2007 has the story and directly says “Holle testified that he knew it might be necessary to knock the victim out”. I can’t link directly to that but Google News Archives has a scanned copy of it, you can find it there.

  10. Dave says:

    Wow getting a little defensive there TrueCrimeTime your 2004 Fl. Link does not say he knew prior to the event. Your Wikipedia is well… Wikipedia. Also wiki says that he “thought they were going to get food.” And “that it was a joke” not exactly hard evidence that he In fact did know. I agree that they try to word the article on alternet in a slightly deceptive way but you’re acting as if it is a known fact that he was planning the crime with them. Equally as deceptive in my opinion. Please Show me a reliable source showing otherwise

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      This NY Times article states that he “made statements to the police” that he knew a drug house was to be robbed: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/04/us/04felony.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
      This article from his sentencing makes it clear the judge and jury were convicting him of prior knowledge: http://www.staugustine.com/stories/051405/sta_3078101.shtml
      The Sarasota Herald Tribune for December 5, 2007 has the story and directly says “Holle testified that he knew it might be necessary to knock the victim out”. I can’t link directly to that but Google News Archives has a scanned copy of it, you can find it there.

      • Chaemaria says:

        So, what did Alta really do to you because your links do not support your argument. None your links actually mention Holle’s testimony. All the links just say he knew or the prosecution says he knew the crime was to take place. Try again.

        • TrueCrimeTime says:

          What AlterNet did was to not mention the possibility at all. They are dishonest. One of the articles cited say he testified in court that he not only knew of the robbery but that he also knew that violence might take place. And other links mention his statements to the police. So you are saying you are happy with one side of the story and not the other?

          • Dave says:

            Your new links say the same thing as your old links. That he thought they were getting food and their mention of the possible crime was a joke. Your reading comprehension needs some work bud. I do agree with the point of your article that they left out any mention of his possible knowledge but still you have yet to show and proof that he In fact knew and was OK with them committing this crime. As chaemaria said, try again.

    • Phil! says:

      I’ve been cracking my brain trying to figure this out. you literally just took the words out of my mouth @Dave. if i hadn’t gone through the comments, i would assume from the write up that true crime was insisting on his guilt and had evidence to back this up.
      So i went and did extensive research and nothing. This article is messing with someones life. You might really want to reconsider the way it’s phrased.

  11. Dan says:

    Wow, I can’t believe how many people are mis-reading/misunderstanding this post, or just entirely missing your point…

    I agree with you, it’s such a shame when sites and news outlets only offer a ‘filtered’ report to ensure that the public sympathise with the ‘correct’ victim, as far as they’re concerned, when, as you mentioned, the real facts should (and do in this case) speak for themselves, and intentionally misleading people is only likely to alienate them against their cause once they realise the truth. Thanks for the information.

  12. Danny says:

    I understand that you are trying to give us truth, but even if Ryan knew that his friends were gonna rob somebody he should get the penalty of conspiring to robbery, not murder with a life sentence and no possibility for parole. That is the most extreme sentence I’ve ever heard.

    Even if you are on his side, which I think you are, being skeptical and cynical won’t help him. Headlines of what Alternet wrote will. Because at the end of the day this is an injustice. There’s a reason why we’re the only country with these draconian laws.

    • TrueCrimeTime says:

      He could have gotten a shorter sentence, he was offered a plea bargain of, I believe ten years, he opted to go to trial.

      Unless I am mistaken you are saying lies are okay as long the cause is just?

      • Dave says:

        So ten years is fine for loaning your friend your car. Yeah right. If it was you in his shoes would you honestly take that deal? Get real please.

        • Rocktivity says:

          Had I been in his shoes, I would have been “honest” enough to realize that once the jury heard that I knew about the robbery, I had NO chance of an acquittal. I would have taken the deal — especially if it came with a shot at parole within those then years.

          Nonetheless, Holle never should have been charged with felony murder — he was an accessory, not a full-fledged co-conspirator. He should be released with credit for time served.

          • Debbie says:

            Unless he really didn’t know about the robbery before hand, in which case I wouldn’t take the deal either. Someone who has never been in trouble before likely felt that the jury would believe what he said and that he would be found not guilty. I could totally see where they talked about robbing someone of their weed and he thought they were joking. If you’ve never been in trouble before why would you think any different?
            And yes, Altnet didn’t mention that he had made statements that they had talked about the robbery beforehand, but to totally not care about his plight bc of a news article, that he didn’t write, btw… Is harsh.

        • TrueCrimeTime says:

          I swore I would not reply to any more of these, but I can’t help it.

          Do you really think your question really has anything to do with the point of my post?

      • Phil! says:

        Hold up. Because he was offered 10years for a crime he didn’t commit, that makes it okay? I’m lost. Anyone would opt to go to Trial as opposed to serving 10years for sleeping

  13. Toney Malone says:

    There is a 15 minute video from 2011 you can easily find on Google that is actually hosted on the Fox News website where Ryan is interviewed and he clearly states himself that he knew they were going to commit a crime, including beating the girl. Is that research enough for you people?

  14. Rubes says:

    After reading all the comments I have my own things to add..
    First: he should have lied and said he knew nothing after all he was sleeping.
    Second: life in prison is wrong for this young man sleeping whether he was aware of the crime or not
    Third: TrueCrime you came a bit harsh on this man but I agree, News should not be altered with.
    FOURTH: this is Americas fault for allowing weed to not being legal. Had it been at the time then these men may have had an oppurtunity to grow weed instead of steal it.. From a macro perspective on society.. God bless him poor kid.

    On a serious note ignoring number 4 that’s just a personal view here’s some other insight of mine to leave you ladies and gentlemen something to think about.

    Think about this also, let’s say I plan on fighting somebody and ask to use your car and I end up killing him, shall you go to jail for it? Personally I think not.. that seems outrageous considering we all have free will to make a choice and I chose to fight not you. Same goes for this case these people planned on what “beating” these people up. No death was intended if anything be charged for assisted assault if that’s something people may get charged with. Everything needs to be looked into context and this man was not aware of any sort of murder. He was ASLEEP my gosh the judicial a joke to put this man in jail for life.

  15. Jenna Lee says:

    This is absolutely crazy. They went back far enough to say without Ryan’s car there would not have been a murder. Well if that’s the case why don’t they go all the way to the ROOT. The animal who beat the girl to death…had his mother not given him life he would have never existed therefore he would have never killed.— Pretty stupid to say right??? I guess you could argue that the difference between the mother of the murderer and Ryan is that Ryan “knew” what they were going to do and the mother did not know she was raising a murderer, or did she??? Kid’s growing up say things like “I wish you would die do another kid”, “I hate you”, I’m gonna kill somebody”… sometimes joking around or being so angry, perhaps sometime in his life this murderer said this… should his mother assume he is going to grow up and murder someone? —No it’s ridiculous to say. Ryan could have easily joined the “dream team” and driven them himself he could have even waited in the car to give them a quicker getaway but did he? No! He chose to stay home. Ryan had been drinking so he was obviously under the influence and not 100% incoherent, can we all agree that when someone is under the influence they do not pay attention to every little detail? Isn’t that why we can’t drink and drive? Because we cannot be 100% alert? If Ryan said he thought that the “Dream team” was joking when they said they were going to rob someone it is definitely possible since he was not 100% alert and could not fully read their demeanor. Or what about the mother of the girl who died? Had she not been selling drugs in the home that the girl lived in, the boys would not have been there to rob her in the first place. Bottom line, Ryan should not have to lose his life because some asshole chose to take someone else’s. The men who were physically there, physically took part in the crime, came up with the idea, made the plans…they should be the ones spending their life in prison. That’s it!!! I understand the “parents” (I use that term lightly)of the girl want justice for her but being angry and trying to take another persons life is just as wrong. Maybe they should re-evaluate their decisions and their parenting techniques. If their daughter sold weed to someone who killed her would the parents call themselves murderers? I mean after all they are who taught her to sell weed, right? People make their own decisions. Ryan chose to stay home, the mother chose to sell drugs, and the animals who committed the crime chose to do so. End of story.

  16. Angel says:

    I’m sure most won’t agree with me but here’s my opinion anyways. I don’t think this kid deserved life without parole. I think a few years and work release or house arrest would better suit this scenario. Hold him accountable for knowing about the robbery and offering up the vehicle that aided in carrying out the crime but end it there. The other men involved got what they deserved point blank. I feel like it’s ultimately unjust that the drug dealing mom got 3 years and not a life sentence for basically being the reason her daughter is dead. I don’t feel Ryan was innocent and do think that our expectation in this country should be if you knew about crime aided the crime even from a distance didn’t report it and did nothing to stop it then you should go to jail. Life doesn’t fit his involvement though. He’s done his time they should let him out. The others involved with any luck they rot in prision and it’s sad her moms not there rotting along side of them.

  17. John says:

    After seeing a link to this story on my Facebook newsfeed I was interested and did some further research. I am a lawyer in New York and am familiar with the felony murder rule as it applies here. After doing some research I found that the Florida one is not so different.

    The person who wrote this article is 100% right and any one who disagrees with him is either misreading what he is saying or you are just speaking from emotion and not logic.

    When I first read this story it was from AlterNet and my first initial reaction was like most of you “wow, no way is this fair or possible”. However, after further research I began to see why the results came out like they did.

    I want to say first that I don’t agree with Florida law nor do I think a lot of them are fair. I don’t think the punishment fits the crime in this case whatsoever.

    Under Florida law, all a person needs to do in order to be guilty of felony murder is be deemed a co-felon. In NY he would have been considered a co conspirator and just as guilty. For those of you arguing he did not have the intent are completely off base. The statute of felony murder states that during the commission of or flight therefrom a felony, a victim or non participant is UNINTENTIONALLY killed. The linch pin in felony murder is the lack of intent.

    The next thing is that he did admit that he heard them say what they were planning to do after the party. Under Florida law, knowledge that the crime is likely to occur is all you need to be a co felon. Therefore, Ryan hurt himself by admitting that fact. He was tried before a jury and convicted beyond a reasonable doubt which is a very high standard to prove.

    There’s no question by reading the transcripts that he had knowledge of what they were thinking about doing and by giving them his car he thereby enabled them in their commission of the felony.

    Again, I do not think he should be serving a life sentence. When I first read the article I was ready to jump on a plane tomorrow to file a writ of habeas corpus on his behalf. But unfortunately he did roll the dice and turned down that 10 year offer. I don’t doubt that he had some court appointed counsel who did not advise him strongly enough. However, that decision rests with the client not the attorney so I’m sure he believed he couldn’t lose and now he’s paying the price for that decision.

    So in conclusion, I think this is a shame that he is serving a life sentence. I don’t think the punishment fits the crime at all. However, the Florida statutes are clear and he did make statements indicating that he had knowledge of his friends intentions. Therefore, under the Florida law he is just as guilty regardless if he was there or not.

    The person who wrote this article is addressing an important point. These sites are skewing the story to make it sound very one sided and absurd. They are lying to people to get an outrage going. But believe me, no mistake was made here. Unfortunately, Ryan is guilty under the law as it’s written.

  18. Becky says:

    Brilliant article, addresses the point perfectly.

    I read the AlterNet article after it appeared on my Facebook feed. I was as shocked as anybody else and decided I wanted to read more about this. Before I’d even clicked off Google there were references to his knowing of his friends’ intentions, (the robbery and beating, of course the murder was unintentional). It definitely did dampen my spirit in terms of wanting justice for Holle, even more so than had I been told the whole story to begin with. Therefore, I agree with you that stories that neglect key facts can have the opposite effect to their intention.

    However, he definitely shouldn’t be serving a life sentence, and I would say that something needs to be done to change this law.

    In terms of the plea deal, to me it seems he was convinced he wouldn’t have been found guilty, which means that him legal counsel did not explain the law clearly enough to him for him to make an informed decision. If they were court appointed, I think his counsel should face some sort of action because I see that as neglect.

    Also, and I have no legal education, I am also from England so I know our law is very different here so please excuse me if I’m way off, but I had one more problem with this story. If his friends say they went to the house with intent of robbery & possible gbh. Then, due to whatever unforeseen situation, killed somebody using a gun found at the scene, then they are guilt of manslaughter, rather than murder? They didn’t take a gun with them and there were witnesses to their claims of intent, so it is clear they did not go to commit murder, so it surprises me they are charged with this.

    It reminds me of someone I used to know, he drove his cousin to his ex girlfriend’s house to confront her, his new boyfriend was there and was killed with a gun the cousin took with him. My friend even witnessed the argument, (although not the murder, though heard the shots and so knew what had happened), and drove his cousin back home. He only got 3 years, and I know was released after 18 months. He also had a record for drugs. From where I see it he committed a much worse crime than Holle. Obviously, I understand these were under completely different laws, and Holle’s friends were committing a felony during which the murder happened, but still I don’t think the punishment fits the crime at all).

    http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/Killer-s-relatives-jailed-collective-role-murder/story-13390222-detail/story.html – link to the story.

    • Rocktivity says:

      America’s third degree/felony murder statute says that if someone dies — regardless of the circumstances — in the course of your committing a felony, you’ve also committed a murder.

      If Holle’s victim had had a fatal heart attack (dying at the scene of the crime or later on), or had been able to kill one of the robbers in self defense, the charge against the robbers would still be felony murder because the death occurred as a result of their committing the robbery. It’s meant to be a deterrent against 1) conspiring to commit crimes in general and 2) claiming innocence on the grounds that no one was “supposed” to die. The state of Florida piles on additional penalties if a gun is used (either by firing it or bludgeoning someone with it).

      Like liquor, felony murder works best when used properly. Had your friend’s case taken place in America, felony murder would not apply unless he knew about either the new boyfriend (which would explain why he brought two additional guys along) or that somebody was armed.

      I don’t believe your friend’s claim that he witnessed the argument but not the murder — did he participate in the fight? But if he’d gone to the police right after driving his cousin home, he probably wouldn’t have been charged at all.

  19. Rocktivity says:

    I have two words for Ryan Holle: Ineffective Counsel!

    Even the prosecutor felt that either Holle wasn’t as guilty of the others or that felony murder would be overcharging — hence the 10-year plea deal offer.

    According to an interview he gave Fox News, Holle said his lawyer was so confident of a complete acquittal that Holle’s parents were instructed to bring some street clothes that he could wear home. But it didn’t occur to ANYONE on the defense team that the jury might not believe Holle’s story of being too drunk to know what was really going on?

    Holle was 20 years old at the time — more than six months away from being of legal drinking age — so he had no business BEING drunk! The defense might have generated some sympathy from the jury if they had countered the prosecution’s “No car, no robbery, no death” strategy with “No underage drinking, no decision to SUPPLY the car, no robbery, no death.”

    At any rate, the prosecution gambled and won. The defense gambled and lost.

  20. Annoyedbystupidity says:

    RE: “I am saying I don’t like being lied to by AlterNet.” and “But once I realize I am being lied to I lose any interest I had in Mr. Holle’s plight.”

    Oh, so because you “don’t like being lied to” he can sit in jail.
    Dick Charles is right, you ARE a cunt. And Get over yourself.
    No one cares what you like or don’t like nor does it justify this guys sentence, there was NO PLAN TO KILL ANYBODY.

    Another cunt comment…”BUT” “I would agree the felony murder rule is too strict and leads to injustice, but I don’t like being lied to.”

  21. […] We recently wrote a post pointing out how some “alternative” or “progressive” media outlets are leaving out pertinent information in order to tell a better story. For some reason this is an outrage when the main stream media does it, but is fine if the alternative press does it. […]

  22. Tim Davydov says:

    Life in prison? Are you insane people?

    Look at this rich 16 year old idiot who kills 4 people and gets just a rehab sentence in Texas. Oh, and just an FYI fact. His billionaire parents are just paying 2000 dollars a month for this rehab while tax payers are covering the other $25000!!!


    Whoever says that this man has to spend a lifetime in prison needs to wake up to reality of things.

    Go and do something useful for a change. Write an article about true “justice” in America

  23. concerned citizen says:

    Paul Modrowski paulmodrowski.blogspot.com was convicted for lending his car to a supposed murderer. Except:
    1. He was out of town WITH HIS CAR when the murder supposedly took place. (His lawyer didn’t allow testimony.)
    2. The man who supposedly committed the murder was ACQUITTED. Even the judge said that it could not be proven that Paul was at the murder scene.

    Check out Paul’s blog: paulmodrowski.blogspot.com

  24. Joe says:

    Did you serious use Wikipedia as a source? My God…

  25. Sasha says:

    Ryan Holle’s case has been APPROVED for re-evaluation on December 10th 2014. He has a chance to get out. I hope he does! He has served long enough (11.5 yrs) for his part. The others can rot in prison but its time to let Ryan go…

  26. Nenepretty says:

    I think the kid is guilty for knowing a crime would be committed, BUT LIFE!?! Life in prison! Hell to the no! That’s extreme. And my heart goes out to the family. I don’t think at all he should’ve gotten time, more like probation. I mean, freakin bank robbers who plan to rob a bank (felony!?!) and kill someone in the process, all participants: get away car, etc…they don’t “all” get life sentences! Our system isn’t all that perfect.

  27. Highroller1990 says:

    The fact that he knew about the murder being taken place prior to lending his car to friends makes him an accomplice. That is called
    conspiracy to murder. What is so difficult to understand? He deserved to rot in prison for his idiotic move, esp talking to a cop without his lawyer present.

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  29. Sasha says:

    UPDATE: Ryan Holle WILL be released from prison. The are varying factors such as good behavior that will shorten the length of time he has left. He is no longer serving a life sentence.

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  31. not your business says:

    If he did have knowledge of the crime, he should be in prison also. Not sure about the life thing though. If he truly did not have knowledge, then I hope and pray he gets revenge. PLUS, I don’t read the Nation, and I AM NOT pleased at all with your last
    sentence comment of the older generation! Suck it up sweetheart!!!!

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