Skip to comments.Authorities: Illinois Father Admits Killings (for breaking curfew)
Posted on 05/11/2005 10:21:39 AM PDT by AntiGuv
WAUKEGAN, Ill. - The father of an 8-year-old girl who was slain along with her best friend admitted to authorities that he was the killer, saying he was angry at the girl for breaking curfew, authorities said Wednesday.
A judge denied bond Wednesday for Jerry Hobbs after prosecutors described a videotaped interview in court in which he allegedly told investigators he stabbed the girls to death.
Hobbs' 8-year-old daughter, Laura Hobbs, and her friend Krystal Tobias, 9, were found dead Monday in a park in Zion, the day after they vanished.
The father, who had been released from a Texas prison last month, told investigators he was angry at Laura when he tracked her and Krystal in the wooded park, punched her and then killed both girls, prosecutors said.
Hobbs, shackled and in a dark blue jail uniform, stared at the floor as Assistant Lake County State's Attorney Jeff Pavletic described the case against him.
Hobbs led police to their bodies Monday morning, claiming then that he found them while searching for his missing daughter. In videotaped interviews, however, prosecutors say Hobbs told them he killed the girls, stabbing his daughter repeatedly in the neck and eyes, after Laura refused to leave the park when he ordered her to go home.
State's attorney Michael Waller told NBC's "Today" earlier Wednesday that the father had showed a lack of emotion and that "things didn't add up" in his interviews with police.
The prosecutor said Hobbs went looking for his daughter and that Krystal "just happened to be there," before the father killed both girls.
Hobbs has an extensive criminal history dating to 1990 in Texas, including arrests for assault and resisting arrest, according to Texas Department of Public Safety records.
Just last month, he was released from a Texas prison after serving time for an assault in 2001. He had argued with Laura's mother, Sheila Hollabaugh, then grabbed a chain saw and chased neighbors until someone hit him in the back with a shovel, according to Rick Mahler, assistant district attorney for Wichita County, Texas. No one was injured.
Hobbs was sentenced to 10 years probation but failed to appear for required meetings, so his probation was revoked in 2003.
Arthur Hollabaugh said Hobbs had been living with the Hollabaughs after his release.
"Jerry just got out of prison for aggravated assault, and I think they're holding that against him," Hollabaugh said before police announced the charges. "I don't think he did it."
Zion, along Lake Michigan, was founded in 1901 by a religious faith healer. It has about 22,000 residents but retains a quiet at times, rural feel despite being on the edge of both the Chicago and Milwaukee metropolitan areas.
At the entrance to Beulah Park, where the bodies were found, more than a dozen children stood quietly around a growing memorial of flowers, balloons and stuffed animals.
One sign read: "May your angels rest peacefully in heaven."
At a prayer vigil later Tuesday evening, Krystal's family and about 200 community members gathered outside her home and somberly walked the block and a half to Laura's house. The slain girls' families hugged each other and began crying.
Spare the rod, spoil the child.
There is absolutely no way to make sense of this.
This man - and I hesitate to call him such - is the lowest form of being in existence.
Agreed - no individual with this kind of rage should be allowed in society to kill again. The only way to assure that is to put him out of our misery.
Does anyone have a picture of this idiot?
Preferably one with a noose around his neck and his tongue hangin out, gasping his last.
Poor baby, I bet she was scared to death of him.
I still say John Mason from Duluth did it. He's got them shifty eyes.
This "father" is a piece of puke filth. Execute him quickly so God can throw him in Hell.
Some folks just need killin'. This guy is one of them, and sorely overdue at that.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.