For 16 years after the death of his wife, Adolphus Hollingsworth remained a free man.
At some point last week, he temporarily became one again even after Chattanooga authorities touted his capture.
After the Amarillo (Texas) Police Department charged Hollingsworth on Wednesday in the long-unsolved Chattanooga slaying of Victoria Witherspoon Carr, Hollingsworth apparently was released from the Potter County Detention Center and traveled more than 1,200 miles to Rossford, Ohio, where authorities apprehended him again Saturday.
According to a news release from the U.S. Marshals Service in Toledo, Ohio, that described his release from custody in Texas as a mistake, Hollingsworth, 44, is currently detained at the Wood County Jail awaiting extradition to Tennessee.
"It was a crazy chain of events," said Deputy U.S. Marshal Chris Hodge.
After Hollingsworth answered his front door in Amarillo on Wednesday when local police came to serve a murder warrant out of Hamilton County, he was shipped to the Potter County facility and booked at 12:30 p.m., records show.
For some reason, he did not stay there.
The Rossford Police Department and the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force identified Hollingsworth's car in the parking lot of the Knight's Inn Motel in Rossford on Saturday and arrested him without incident when he returned to his vehicle.
Amarillo police referred inquiries about Hollings-worth's release to the Potter County Detention Center.
A deputy there could provide no information late Monday afternoon on when or why Hollings-worth was released and said to call during business hours to speak with the records department.
"To be honest, I don't know what the mixup was in Texas," Hodge said. "All I know is we got a call that a guy wanted for murder was in Toledo and we went out and got him. How they let the guy out is beyond my understanding."
Police suspected Hollingsworth in the 1997 death of Carr, a 28-year-old mother of two, but did not have enough evidence for an arrest until recently after the TNT television series "Cold Justice" pitched in with investigative and technical help.
Carr's body was found on June 1, 1999, and forensic pathologists concluded that she died from a stab wound to the neck.
Contact staff writer David Cobb at dcobb@timesfree press.com or 423-757-6731.