Finley Murder Update

Jury indicts Karen Bunton and William "Tony" Holmes for capital murder in death of Bunton's niece

Latoya Finley
Latoya Finley

A Travis Co. grand jury indicted Karen Bunton and William "Tony" Holmes on July 19 for capital murder in the death of Bunton's 22-year-old niece Latoya Finley. Travis Co. Sheriff's investigators had charged the pair with murder, but the grand jury upped the ante based on a finding that the couple had also robbed Finley, making her death a capital offense and making Bunton and Holmes eligible for a death sentence, or life in prison. (Whether the state will seek the death penalty is up to District Attorney Ronnie Earle.) According to the grand jurors, Bunton and Holmes robbed Finley (police said Bunton tried to pawn several items), then stabbed and beat her before smothering her to death.

Finley's mother Vickie reported her daughter missing on March 5; Finley left Austin on a weeklong trip to Los Angeles, where she hoped to make music industry contacts, but never returned. Investigators quickly turned to Bunton to help locate Finley – Bunton was supposed to help Finley get packed and started off on her trip, Vickie reported. But several weeks into their investigation, as police continued to question Bunton, she cut off all contact with deputies and disappeared. In April, Abilene police caught up with the pair driving Latoya's car and, after a short chase, pulled them over; in the trunk, investigators found human remains later identified as Latoya. (For more on the story, see "Finley Murder Mystery Unravels," April 28.)

  • More of the Story

  • Naked City

    Headlines and happenings from Austin and beyond

    Austin Reaches Biodiesel Big Leagues

    New local partnership makes Austin biodiesel pump headquarters
  • WilCo Shooting

    What took sheriff's office so long to release info on incident?

    Hardcore Housing Limbo

    FEMA's emergency rent assistance program for last year's hurricane evacuees comes to an end

    More Cantu Controversy

    Unfair bias questions hit Bexar Co. District Attorney's Office in wake of publication of comments by DA investigators conducting an inquiry into possible wrongful conviction and execution of Ruben Cantu

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Latoya Finley
Finley Murder Mystery Unravels
Finley Murder Mystery Unravels
After more than a month of searching for the aspiring singer / songwriter, sheriff's investigators charge victim's aunt and uncle with her murder

Jordan Smith, April 28, 2006

More by Jordan Smith
'Chrome Underground' Goes Classic Car Hunting
'Chrome Underground' Goes Classic Car Hunting
Motoreum's Yusuf & Antonio talk about the biz and their reality TV debut

May 22, 2014

Eighth Inmate of the Year Set to Die
Eighth Inmate of the Year Set to Die
Eighth inmate of the year set to die

May 9, 2014


Latoya Finley, Karen Bunton, William Tony Holmes, capital murder, death penalty, Travis Co. Sheriff's Office, Ronnie Earle, Vickie Finley, murder

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle