Cable Company Employee Robbed, Killed Elderly Texas Woman After Service Call. Now Company Must Pay $7 Billion

In 2019, Roy Holden Jr. dressed in his cable uniform and took a company vehicle while off-duty to Betty Thomas' home and stabbed her multiple times

Cordon tape seals off an active crime scene.
Police tape. Photo: Getty

A Dallas County jury awarded $7 billion to the family of an 83-year-old grandmother who was stabbed to death by a former employee of a cable company on Tuesday, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

Last month, a jury found Charter Communications — which operates Spectrum — liable for the death of Betty Thomas and awarded $375 million in compensatory damages, which Spectrum is responsible for paying 90 percent, the paper reported.

This week, the award for punitive damages brings the total to $7.3 billion.

"This was a shocking breach of faith by a company that sends workers inside millions of homes every year," said the family's attorney Chris Hamilton in a statement obtained by the paper. "The jury in this case was thoughtful and attentive to the evidence. This verdict justly reflects the extensive evidence regarding the nature of the harm caused by Charter Spectrum's gross negligence and reckless misconduct.

On December 11, 2019, Roy Holden Jr. worked for the cable company and visited Thomas' Irving home to do some work, KPRC reported.

Cable company ordered to pay over $7 billion in damages to family of Texas grandmother murdered by employee
Roy Holden Jr.

The following day, prosecutors said Holden dressed in uniform and took a company vehicle while he was off-duty and returned to Thomas' home, NBC Dallas-Fort Worth reported. He stabbed Thomas multiple times and took her credit cards.

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Holden was charged with capital murder, but in April 2021, he pleaded guilty and is now serving life sentence.

Following this week's verdict, Charter Communications announced it would be appealing in a statement obtained by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

"Our hearts go out to Mrs. Thomas' family in the wake of this senseless and tragic crime," Charter officials stated. "The responsibility for this horrible act rests solely with Mr. Holden, who was not on duty, and we are grateful he is in prison for life. While we respect the jury and the justice system, we strongly disagree with the verdict."

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