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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Deputies say a man who was behind bars at the Brunswick County Jail was found unresponsive in his jail cell early this morning after an apparent suicide.

According to a news release from a sheriff’s office spokeswoman, deputies discovered Thomas Jason Holland, 28, of Ash, dead in his cell around 1:15 a.m. Arrest warrants show that Holland, who was facing several felony charges, including first-degree murder and numerous counts of breaking and entering and larceny, has been in jail since December of 2013.

Deputies say Sheriff John Ingram and District Attorney Jon David have asked the State Bureau of Investigation to conduct an investigation into Holland’s death. The release says a separate internal investigation will also be conducted at the detention center.

So far, deputies said there is no indication of foul play or policy and procedures violations.

Holland was accused of forcing his way into John Kusta’s home to try and rob him in Ash. Deputies said a fight broke out between the two, and a shot was fired from a .410 shotgun owned by Kusta. The sheriff said it appears the same gun was used by Holland to hit Kusta in the back of the head, which killed the 69-year-old.

Comment on this Story

  • Forgiven

    As a member of Tony’s family I can say most of us that love him have forgiven Mr. Holland, and are praying for his family that was hurt by his actions and death. We are not his Judge, he faces the ultimate Judge now.

  • aliceall03@yahoo.com

    I can see how Jennifer would attempt, I would too if it was my family. He was a good guy in a bad situation. Never had his day in court!

  • bob

    Its two different jails you dummy!!!

  • zenobia

    Two deaths now, what does it take to review your “policies”?

  • AshPerson

    What in the H$%% are you talking about outstanding. I know this man and his family. They lived very close to me. The outstanding family are nothing but a bunch of crack heads just like he was. Well another one bites the dust.

  • AshPerson

    Sorry sad news. Outstanding upstanding standing up standing down standing your ground. You may be right I don’t know all his family but the family I know and some of his crack head friends are worthless people. He beat my neighbor to death for money to get high. I bet he should been on Clint Eastwood movie Hang em High

  • Sad News

    The comment was upstanding and yes, he has family that fit the description I first gave. Just because you may happen to live near SOME of his family does NOT mean you know ALL of them.

  • jennifer

    thank you!

  • Jennifer

    He did not beat you neighbor for money to get high. When this fight happened he didn’t get anything from him he was simply running through there when this altercation took place he did not go there to rob nor did he take anything after the fight. And wow you know his crack head friends how is that being you are taking so much crap like you know nobody that has a drug problem. Want you just be brave enough to put who you are Ash person

  • AshPerson

    Oh come on he was just running through there. What was he doing in his house? He MURDERED the man. He beat him he robbed him. Why are you taking up for this low life dead beat evil person. Why do you want to know me. I can rest assure you I don’t want to know you cause I think you are just like him.

  • Sad News

    Mr. Holland never got his day in court, yes, by his own hand. He was accused, not convicted. People have flaws in varying degrees. You don’t know anything about him other than what he is accused of so all I was and am asking of anyone who has posted a hateful comment here is to please be aware that there are good people with loving hearts hurting right now. You don’t need nor are you expected to respect Mr. Holland as you have already sat in judgment, right or wrong – I’m not getting into that, but please think before saying hateful things. It doesn’t make you look good either.

  • A Long

    Anyone making any negative statements concerning Mr. Holland needs to keep in mind one simple little fact, he was charged not convicted. He never got his day in court. He was accused of forcing his way into his house which is possible or possibly not what happened. Mr. Holland was not found at the scene of the crime so therefore many scenarios could have taken place. If indeed he was just running through Mr. Kusta’s property which is a likely scenario because Mr. Kusta lived behind where Mr. Holland did. They could have had an argument and Mr. Holland could’ve tried to defend himself and hit Mr. Kusta, which is possible because blunt force to the head doesn’t always result in an immediate death if death even does occur but it did in this case. Either way, unless you were there to witness this “crime” take place and know for a fact every detail, don’t assume you know what really happened. Two lives were senselessly lost because of this but there is not one single person on this thread worthy of passing judgment on this situation. When you have become a perfect person and know everything, then have at it. Until then, grow up and stop hurting innocent people. You aren’t hurting Mr. Holland, you are hurting his family and friends with your unintelligent comments.

  • zenobia

    Dummy asks-So all the different jails have different polices about suicidal or ill inmates? What about that Frink guy in Columbus county?
    He wasn’t a murderer.

  • notasheeple

    I know there is a justice for Ron Hewett facebook page since they think he was killed by the sheriff’s office in New Hanover.

    So let’s start a justice for Thomas Holland page since this was obviously an inside job as well.

    Still wish southeastern nc was this exited about finding the real culprits that killed Davina Buff Jones

  • Guesteasy

    “Thomas Jason Holland, 27, has been charged with the murder of 69-year-old Tony Kusta. Sheriff Ingram says on Friday, Holland reportedly broke into Kusta’s home, located in Ash, where a brief struggle ensued. Deputies found Kusta the next day, while responding to the home for a check welfare call.

    Autopsy results showed that Kusta was not shot by the gun, but was hit in the head with it, and died from blunt force trauma to the head.

    Holland is charged with first degree murder, and is being held without bond.”

    WHAT about justice for the man he MURDERED?????

  • burgerboy

    One less worthless uncivilized criminel trashbag that tax payers have to provide free room and board for when they lay up there in prison gettin fat and sassey off of our tax dollars watching that color tv and layin around in bed all day while us normal ppl have to get up and GO TO WORK FOR A LIVING!

  • Aggravated Native

    Your comment is just a sad reminder of how messed up our world is today. To even make a statement about “us normal ppl” tells me right there that you are shortsighted at best when it comes to understanding your fellow man. I’m not sure that any of us fall into the normal category.
    You seem very quick to describe Mr. Holland as worthless and uncivilized, but yet you likely never met the man. Have you considered that he has loved ones who are suffering today or does that not matter to you simply because it happened to someone else’s family and not your own? The loss of his life doesn’t exactly assuage the loss of Tony Kusta’s life. Two lives are gone and two families are left to pick up the pieces. There are no winners here today. Instead of being so quick to act as judge and jury perhaps you can use those moments to remind yourself that life is precious regardless.

  • Sad News

    Let’s remember that this man also has some very fine, upstanding, decent, hard-working family members who loved him with all they were worth and are hurting right now “Burgerboy”. God forbid you are ever in the same situation! You can feel however you want to in private or with your best “burger buddy” but you should think before you post something like this. He’s gone. You’re happy. There are others who broken over this. Grow up!

  • havesomerespectpeople

    My condolences for the family. Wishing you peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead & loving memories to forever hold in your hearts. He was a son, father, brother, uncle & more. Things happen that are out of our control, prayers to you & yours today & always.

  • Guestomfg

    WHO CARES !!! This scumbag killed someone !

  • Sad News

    Jennifer, there is no use trying to reason with ignorance. Don’t waste your time.

  • notasheeple

    Honestly I just put it up as sarcarasm. people are going to facebook demanding that the people responsible for Ron Hewetts death be made responsible… that somehow it is all an inside job. well that person has already been taken care of… it was Ron Hewett

    But I agree his victim needed justcie and well his killer is now going before Almighty God and is now getting his eternal sentance

  • Jennifer

    Maybe you should read the story better he broke into his house prior to this incident. He did not break into it that night.

  • 2 families grieve

    The whole situation is terrible…and now 2 lives are lost and their families are left to grieve.
    Grateful to see comments with compassion for both losses.
    It is truly mean spirited to post the negative comments.

    Please try to love as Christ loves.
    God has forgiven us for so much and He always does. There is nothing so bad that He will not forgive. So, how is it that people feel there are offenses they will not forgive? What right do we have to hold such grudges? We are not the Almighty God.

    Please stop the hurtful comments.
    Didn’t we all grow up hearing “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all?” What a more merciful world and peaceful world we would have if we showed some love and just common decency.

    Please lift each other up during the continuation of this tragedy…
    Let us all join together to pray for the families that they may heal. Can we all just agree to pray to our Heavenly Father for comfort for all those left to morn?

  • Guest2020

    The difference is that Tony Kusta’s life was cut short at Holland’s hands. Kusta’s life is on Holland’s head. Any suffering that Holland’s family is going through is because of the choices that Holland made. He chose to beat a man to death and instead of facing the music or considering how his own family might feel, he chose to take his own life as well. Holland’s fate is due to the choices he made. No, his suicide cannot make up for the life he took, but his death does not erase his bad deeds, either.

  • Daniel Seamans

    Hi folks. For those wondering why your comments are not showing up…
    Foul language = deleted comment
    Please speak freely….but not that freely.
    Thank you,


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