Teen in alleged video beating posts bond after court appearance on new burglary charge

June 14, 2012 8:32:56 PM PDT
Chad Holley, the convicted burglar whose beating by HPD officers was caught on camera back in 2010 and made national headlines, was arrested Wednesday on a new burglary charge. He went before a judge overnight and posted bond Thursday afternoon.

After Chad Holley walked out of jail, activists told us they learned some new details about his troublesome behavior in recent weeks. They say the teen's family claims he's been off his medicine.

Holley didn't say a word as he walked out of jail Thursday afternoon with community activist Quanell X by his side. The 18-year-old Holley is the first in this group of accused burglars to bond out after allegedly breaking into a northwest side home on Wednesday afternoon

"The young man has some serious mental health issues. The family does. And it's a problem. It's a sad problem," said Quanell X.

He says he's disappointed Holley's back in trouble. He met with the 18-year-old's family to talk about his new arrest. It was an alleged burglary that could have ended with a shooting this time when an eyewitness who called police grabbed his shotgun.

"I said, 'Do you realize, man, you could have gotten killed? Do you realize this man had a shotgun? Do you realize how blessed you are that you are not dead?' And he just would start talking about something totally irrelevant," Quanell X said.

He is the same activist who's been trying to get Holley on the right track after Eyewitness News first obtained the videotape in 2010 of HPD officers kicking and beating Holley during a different burglary arrest.

Holley was 15 at the time. Now Quanell X says the teen's mother claims he hasn't been taking his medicine to help with his mental health issues for about five weeks.

"She never told anybody he was having problems not taking the meds. He was refusing to take the meds," Quanell X said.

Holley's repeat run-in with the law magnifies what one gang prevention leader calls a state of emergency among at-risk youth.

"Chad Holley is just one incident. If you keep your eyes on that somebody else will be coming in your back door, if we don't deal with this problem," said Reginald Gordon with Operation Outreach. "When men in our community will stand up our boys will sit down."

On Thursday night, the man who made the video public, was joined by many more who have led a call for justice since the 2010 tape was first shown.

"Chad Holley will have his day in court, as he had his day in court in the juvenile proceeding. These officers must be weighed for what they did on that videotape that's clearly criminal conduct and they should go to jail," he said.

Cyndi Payton's actions changed the lives of many when she turned over the video of Holley being stomped and hit by Houston police. The former warehouse manager says she's disappointed by Wednesday's arrest and joined these community leaders at the meeting.

"I just don't want anybody to lose focus on what the cause is. The cause is against police brutality and this is not about Chad Holley," she said.

One Houston police officer has been acquitted of the charges connected to the Holley beating, but three more are still awaiting trial.

"Chad Holley's arrest the other day is a separate issue and I hope the media does not connect them, along with the DA and the citizens of Harris County," said Ronald Smith with New Mt. Calvary Baptist Church.

The district attorney isn't saying much about the star witness' new arrest.

"What I'm concerned about is pretrial publicity. One of the reasons why the trial of the officers was delayed two years is because of pretrial publicity," said Harris Co. District Attorney Pat Lykos.

Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland says Holley's arrest by the Harris County Sheriff's Office has no connection to the incident involving former Houston police officers on trial.

Holley and the other accused burglars are due back in court on Friday morning.

Earlier developments on Thursday

Holley, 18, is charged with burglary of habitation. He and three other suspects all appeared before a judge around 2am Thursday.

Witnesses to Wednesday's alleged burglary say they saw the four suspects kick in the back door of a home in northwest Harris County and take a laptop along with other electronic equipment. Police were called to the scene and caught the four men leaving the neighborhood in a car.

Sheriff's deputies say they spotted the vehicle leaving the neighborhood and pulled it over, finding the laptop inside. All four occupants were arrested.

Holley's name is known to many in Houston and Harris County. He was involved in a high-profile case after he was beaten by several Houston police officers when they caught him committing a burglary back in 2010. The case made national headlines as well.

Since then, one HPD officer has been acquitted of the charges, and three more cases are still pending.

The attorney who represented one of the officers accused of beating Holley says he's not surprised by the teen's new run-in with the law.

Dick Deguerin defended Officer Andrew Blomberg, who was acquitted of official oppression. Three other officers are still awaiting trial. Deguerin is calling for the district attorney to dismiss those cases.

"He's a thief and a burglar and these police officers were protecting you and me from people like him," said Deguerin.

Houston Police Officers' Union President Ray Hunt says he's concerned the new round of publicity will make it more difficult for the remaining three officers to get fair trials.

We spoke with some people in the community to get their take on this latest arrest.

"Why are you going to try and fight for your civil rights as a citizen, you're out there committing crimes, why should the city pay you money for what they did wrong, and you're still out there doing wrong? You're not any better then anyone out there," said Liz Rodriguez.

"Kinda sad especially after he graduated, he was talking about going to college, you would think that he would get on the right path and not do something like that again," said Mickele Daniels.

When we spoke with Quanell X Thursday morning, he added Holley's mother is devastated. He said that he, along with other community leaders, will be meeting with Holley later Thursday afternoon in a private meeting. They're hoping to get some sort of explanation from Holley. Quanell X said they will then address the public on the matter.

Quanell X added he believes Holley will be punished when he faces his day in court regarding this latest charge.

When Holley was formally charged overnight, he said he had an attorney. However, Quanell X says there is no attorney in place at this time.

We will have the latest developments in this story on Eyewitness News and on abc13.com.

Eyewitness News has been following the Chad Holley case since the first burglary arrest. You can see all of our reports here.


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