LORAIN — Albert Fine may face the death penalty for the slaying of Catherine “Kat” Hoholski, his attorney said following Fine’s initial court appearance on aggravated murder and kidnapping charges Monday in Lorain Municipal Court.
Dan Wightman, Fine’s court-appointed attorney, said he is still learning the details of the allegations against his client, but based on the charges of aggravated murder and kidnapping Fine already faces, he believes a grand jury could indict him with a death specification.
Fine, 30, was returned to Lorain County on Friday from Kentucky, where he has been held since his arrest in a Lowe’s parking lot on Aug. 9, a day after Hoholski’s decomposing body was found in a storage unit at the Lorain apartment the couple shared.
Fine, who had fought extradition from Kentucky, is being held without bond in the Lorain County Jail, where he is under suicide watch at the request of Lorain police, Lorain County Sheriff’s Lt. Mike Crum said.
Lorain police Lt. Mark Carpentiere said the request was made because similar precautions had been taken by Kentucky authorities based on comments Fine made after his arrest.
Crum said Fine will be held in solitary confinement at least until a prison mental health expert has had a chance to evaluate him.
According to Lorain police, Fine confessed to strangling Hoholski during a confrontation on June 28 in their apartment and then using her cell phone to make it appear as if she were still alive.
Fine told police that he believed Hoholski, with whom he had a child, had been cheating on him. During his confession, he reportedly told police that he first bound and gagged Hoholski after choking her.
When she broke free of the sex toy handcuffs he had used to bind her wrists and began struggling, Fine told police he strangled her. After he returned from cleaning blood off himself, he told officers Hoholski, whose mother reported her missing on July 12, was dead.
Police reported finding blood still in the apartment, although they noted the bathtub and sink had been “extensively cleaned.”
Hoholski’s body was discovered Aug. 8 following weeks of complaints by residents of the Villas of Beau Monde apartments about an odor in the area.
Fine is due back in Lorain Municipal Court on Oct. 31 for a preliminary hearing.
Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or email@example.com.