Family fighting to keep convicted murderer behind bars

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Reported by: Janai Norman
Updated: 12/31/2013 10:42 am Published: 12/31/2013 10:41 am

A family is trying to keep a convicted killer behind bars.

David Sherrick, 57, is serving two life sentences for the 1983 murders of Russell and Neva Holden.

A parole board could take a small step toward releasing Sherrick next month.

FOX23's Janai Norman spoke with those close to the case, who say he should never be set free.

Two days before the 31st anniversary of committing one of the most heinous crimes in Washington County, Sherrick will again face a parole board.

"I just can't fathom the idea that somebody like that could be getting out of prison," said Sheriff Rick Silver.

It's an idea that's concerning to both law enforcement and the victim's families who recall the terrifying murders when Herrick cut off Russell Holden's finger in order to steal a ring.

"They were stabbed multiple times with an ice pick and stabbed again with a knife, and dad was stabbed again. Even after he was dead, he was stabbed 15 more times," said Pat Holden, Russell's daughter-in-law.

FOX23 found newspaper clippings that documented the crime. Neva Holden was stabbed more than 80 times.

"He's come up for parole before but always been denied," said Sheriff Silver.

Laura Holden has monitored Sherrick's parole status and told FOX23 he's been denied four times before.

But she learned he became eligible again for parole on just one of the life sentences again after having served 30 years.

"In the state of Oklahoma, if you satisfy a third of your sentence, you are qualified for parole," said Laura Holden.

"That's the biggest concern, that since he's been passed through to the second phase, that there's a good possibility they're going to put him back on the street and we don't want that," said Pat Holden.

So, family members and law enforcement are working together to try to convince a parole board that Sherrick should remain behind bars until, as Sheriff Silver writes, the day they carry Sherrick out on a stretcher.

"I'll do whatever I can do, whatever the family asks me to do, in my power, to keep this guy from ever getting out of a prison," said Sheriff Silver.

"Do you think it's possible that he is fit for society?" asked Norman.

"Based on my experience, no way, no," said Sheriff Silver.

And although Sherrick has written that "no one is more remorseful than I that Russell and Neva are not living today," it is for them and the safety of others from Sherrick that the victim's family said they're fighting.

"I'm doing it for my family, the safety of my family and the safety of the community," said Laura Holden.

In his letter to the parole board, Silver asked them how a person could change so much in 30 years that's committed a crime of such magnitude to prepare them to be a productive citizen of the community.

His answer: You can't, that's what prisons are for. The hearing is scheduled to take place on Jan. 13

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

MoonSavor - 1/1/2014 12:17 PM
2 Votes
KEEP this scum-bag behind bars, and MAKE him pay for what he's done and what he has put the family through losing their loved one. Sherrick is where he belongs!!!!

rrstump - 12/31/2013 1:30 PM
2 Votes
For Oklahoma being a state of "The Bible Belt" they sure do have their moral standards, values and integrity all wrong. A man like David Sherrick should not even be considered for parole after committing a crime of that extent nature, regardless of satisfying even half of his sentence. Any human being that will kill a person let alone two people the way he did is not and will probably never be safe for the free world. I currently know of a man serving a 75yr sentence for a murder his friend committed then was killed because the state had two dead bodies and wanted someone to be punished for. He has been denied parole every time it's came up since he was convicted in 1995 at the age of 17yrs old. If you can help me see that an innocent man get out before this viscous David Sherrick does it would be greatly appreciated, his mother would love to be with him in the free world before she passes considering he has served almost 18years for a crime he never committed. Please check it out at and let's support the Holden family as much as possible for the loss the went through.
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