Missing La. Teen’s Body Found Dismembered in River, Man She Met Online Charged with Murder

Sheryl M. Turner was remembered as "a shining light to all who knew her"

<p>Gofundme</p> Sheryl Turner


Sheryl Turner

The death of a 19-year-old female from New Iberia, La., has been connected to a 29-year-old man she met online.

Sheryl M. Turner was last seen by her family on Dec. 31, 2023, before traveling to the West Monroe home of Anthony Pierce Holland Jr., the Catahoula Parish Sheriff's Department explained in a press release on Wednesday, April 24.

The two "engaged in a romantic relationship over text message," and Turner told her family that she was going to stay with him before leaving home, the West Monroe Police Department, which collaborated with Catahoula authorities in the investigation, explained in a separate press release.

<p>getty</p> Stock image of a text conversation


Stock image of a text conversation

According to KLFY-TV, Turner's phone was connected to wifi near Holland Jr.'s phone before it stopped transmitting on the night of Jan. 2. Her twin sister Sherry explained in a GoFundMe campaign that Turner was reported missing on Jan. 3, expressing that "as the days went by we knew something was wrong."

Nearly three weeks later, on Jan. 24, the Catahoula Parish Sheriff’s Office received a call about a body floating in the Ouachita River.

"Deputies recovered the body, and the remains were found to be only a torso. There was no head or extremities connected to the body. The remains were sent for an autopsy and the findings led to the case being listed as a homicide," the West Monroe Police Department shared in its release.

<p>Sheryl Turner/ Facebook</p> Sheryl Turner

Sheryl Turner/ Facebook

Sheryl Turner

With the help of a DNA sample from her twin sister Sherry, the remains were identified as Turner on Feb. 23.

Through "forensic data and surveillance," Holland Jr. was named a suspect in the case, and the West Monroe Police Department executed a search warrant on his home on April 23.

"During the search warrants at Holland’s home, forensic evidence of a crime of violence was obtained. During subsequent interviews with Holland, he admitted to killing Turner inside his residence. Holland further stated he dismembered the body of Turner inside his home. Holland stated he placed Turner’s dismembered remains into a body of water that fed into the Ouachita River," the department states in its press release.

<p>Catahoula Parish Sheriff's Department</p> Anthony Pierce Holland, Jr.

Catahoula Parish Sheriff's Department

Anthony Pierce Holland, Jr.

Holland Jr. was taken into custody without incident and booked at the Ouachita Correctional Center for one count of Second-Degree Murder, according to the department.

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In her obituary, Turner was remembered as "a shining light to all who knew her, with a kind and loving personality that radiated through her beautiful smile and touched the hearts of those around her."

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