Fall River Teen Admits to Fatally Stabbing His Cousin
FALL RIVER — A 19-year-old Fall River man will be spending over a decade in prison after he pleaded guilty to stabbing his cousin to death three years ago, according to the Bristol County District Attorney's Office.
Michael Holloway was sentenced to 10 to 12 and a half years in state prison after admitting to manslaughter and other criminal offenses in the fatal stabbing of 17-year-old William Wheeler, Jr. in 2019.
Holloway pleaded guilty to the charges last week in Fall River Superior Court, the D.A.'s office said.
According to the office, Fall River police were called to 96 Fountain St. on Feb. 13, 2019 for a reported stabbing.
Officers arrived to find Wheeler suffering from a minor stab wound to his nose and a serious stab wound to his stomach and immediately rushed him to the hospital, where he died from his injuries.
The D.A.'s office said an investigation found that Holloway and Wheeler had committed an armed robbery on a friend of theirs earlier that day.
Holloway had stolen a backpack and clothing from the robbery victim at knifepoint during the robbery, using a large knife with a blade that looked like a spear, according to the office.
Wheeler and Holloway were cousins with a close relationship.
Following the robbery, the pair returned with two other cousins to the Fountain Street apartment where they were all staying.
Meanwhile the robbery victim's father confronted Wheeler's stepfather about the incident, who then told Wheeler to return the backpack to the victim and expressed anger that Wheeler would rob a friend.
According to the D.A.'s office, that evening, Holloway and Wheeler got into a fight over a blanket and pillow.
During the argument Holloway stabbed his cousin in the nose.
Wheeler then tried to leave to his mother's apartment with the stolen backpack, which kicked off another fight with Holloway.
He stabbed Wheeler in the stomach, then tried to clean up some of the blood before he fled the scene, according to the D.A.'s office.
Holloway was ultimately caught the day after at a relative’s house in Rhode Island.
Along with the manslaughter charge, Holloway also pleaded guilty to assault and battery and armed robbery charges.
After his release from prison, he will spend an additional five years of supervised probation.
“This was a terrible tragedy involving two cousins who has a close relationship," said Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn.
"The spontaneous act of violence that resulted in the victim’s death highlights the poor decision making of a teenage boy."
He added, "I hope the families of both boys can find some solace in the fair resolution of this case."