November 9, 2016
CRESTVIEW — A suspect in the 2006 murder ion Crestview resident Melissa Howard is in custody at the Okaloosa County Jail in Crestview following his extradition from Alabama early this afternoon.
David Russell Holbrook Jr., 42, of Huntsville, Alabama, was flown to Destin Executive Airport early this afternoon following his arrest yesterday by agents with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Crestview Police Department, U.S. Marshals Service, and Alabama Law Enforcement Agency.
Holbrook was charged with first degree murder in the 2006 homicide of Howard following an Okaloosa County Grand Jury indictment yesterday. The FDLE and the Crestview Police Department under lead investigator Ralph Garrett are investigating the case.
Holbrook was arrested at his home in Huntsville yesterday afternoon and was booked into the Madison County Jail in Huntsville.
Melissa Howard was found stabbed to death in her Crestview home on January 6, 2006, at the age 33. An investigation began but evidence obtained in 2006 was insufficient to support an arrest, the FDLE stated.
In May 2015, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement reopened the investigation, along with the Crestview Police Department and the Office of State Attorney, 1st Judicial Circuit. Over the past 18 months, agents, investigators, analysts, and attorneys reviewed original and newly obtained evidence using techniques not available in 2006.
“This was never a cold case since I’ve been chief,” Crestview Police Chief Tony Taylor said. “This has always been an active investigation and it is an ongoing investigation, so we cannot yet comment on some aspects of the case.”
The investigation remains active. Anyone with information is asked to contact the FDLE’s Pensacola office at 800-226-8574.
The State Attorney’s Office, 1st Judicial Circuit, is prosecuting this case.
Taylor said further information will be released as it becomes available.