Roger Holland of Apple Valley allegedly murdered pregnant wife, attempted coverup

Holland and Margorie during happier times (right); Holland as he was being booked into jail on suspicion of murder (left).

Holland and Margorie during happier times (right); Holland as he was being booked into jail on suspicion of murder (left).

Among Steven Johnson, Jeffrey Trevino, and Anthony Mitchell, the Twin Cities has already seen its yearly share of murderous man-on-woman violence between onetime lovers.

The most recent instance happened last Thursday morning in Apple Valley, where Roger Holland, 36, allegedly murdered his pregnant wife, 37-year-old Margorie Holland, and the fetus his wife was carrying.

[jump] According to the Star Tribune, Holland is a staff sergeant in the Texas National Guard, and Margorie was in the military as well. The couple moved to Apple Valley just a few months ago after Holland returned from a deployment in Africa.

KSTP details the story Holland initially told authorities when they arrived at the couple's Apple Valley apartment last Thursday around 10 a.m.:

During his 911 call at about 9:57 a.m., Roger Holland said his wife was in cardiac arrest at the bottom of a flight of stairs.

Roger Holland told authorities he had left the home to purchase breakfast for himself and his wife.

When he returned, he said he found his wife face down on the floor, and wrapped in a blanket. He said she was non-responsive, so he began CPR before calling 911.

But that story didn't hold up for long. From the Strib:
Officers at the scene noticed that Margorie Holland's hands were darker than the rest of her body and that she had dried blood in her nose. She had dark purple bruises on both knees, fresh abrasions on both elbows and a bruise and scratch on her arms.

She also had petechiae -- broken capillaries -- on her face and in her eyes.

There was no blood on the floor of the apartment, only spilled orange juice near the body. There was water on the floor of the shower and the bathroom smelled like someone had showered recently, an officer noted.

At the hospital, officers found many more signs of injuries: bruises, broken fingernails, a black eye, cuts on her chin and more friction burns on her upper and lower arms. A medical exam also found that the thyroid cartilage in her neck was broken -- consistent with strangulation, the complaint said.

KARE 11's report details Holland's possible motive -- Margorie was unhappy and planning to leave:
Officers conducted a search of cellular telephones of both Roger and Margorie Holland and found in a large number of deleted text messages documenting numerous arguments between the couple, including concerns about their financial situation.

The last text argument took place around 9:30 the night before her death, during which Margorie Holland sent her husband a text indicating she planned on divorcing him.

Officers also found a text between the couple's cell phones relating to the breakfast purchase on March 7, the day Margorie Holland died. Roger Holland claimed he received a text from his wife after he left the home and responded. The phones indicated the messages were sent at 9:29 a.m. and 9:32 a.m.

Video surveillance at the apartment building showed, however, that Roger Holland did not leave the residence until 9:34 a.m. that morning.

Also found on Roger Holland's cell phone was a data entry on March 6 which stated: "if you pass out and fall down a flight of stairs, can you break your neck, can your neck be broken if you are."

According to the Strib, during a March 1 text exchange, Magorie told her husband: "I hate my life, I hate the man I married, and I wish I could erase the past 3 years." The Pioneer Press reports the couple had been together for "about three years."

Today, Holland was charged with two counts of second-degree murder -- one in connection with his wife's death, and another in connection with the death of the 15-week-old fetus. Fox 9 reports his bail has been set at $1 million and prosecutors will seek first-degree murder charges.