Delvin C. Holland, a 31-year-old carpenter who had been convicted three times of possessing the drug PCP, was found guilty of first-degree murder yesterday in the fatal shooting of his female roommate. He was sentenced to 35 years in prison.
Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Lewis H. Griffith imposed the sentence that a jury had recommended after almost two hours of deliberation.
Holland shot his roommate, Robin Holland, 22, who had been married to his first cousin, once in the head last Oct. 31 in the driveway of their home in the 6200 block of Old Franconia Road following an argument as she prepared to leave him.
David B. Parks, Delvin Holland's attorney, sought to picture him as confused and argued that the shooting occurred after Robin Holland drove him to his emotional limits. He said that Robin Holland had taken heroin, PCP and other illegal drugs and was associating with pimps and prostitutes.
Delvin Holland testified that as Robin Holland was preparing to leave in a van with friends about 3 a.m., "I was really depressed so I went and got the pistol" he had brought back from a tour in Vietnam with the Army Corps of Engineers. "She said she wasn't going to sleep with me or talk to me but she said she'd stay in the house. Then she said 'I changed my mind, I'm not going to stay.' That's when I pulled the pistol.
"I wanted to hurt myself," Delvin Holland told the jury, sobbing. "I wanted her to see it. I was going to shoot myself. I'm not sure what happened after that."
Attorney Parks said his client had not decided whether to appeal.