Star Hollingsworth (victim)

Star Hollingsworth (victim)

Next Parole Hearing : May 2019 


Star Hollingsworth was beaten, sexually abused, tortured, and murdered by her mother’s boyfriend

Star Hollingsworth
Star Hollingsworth
James Doan
James Doan
Inmate Name: James Doan
Inmate Number: A289966
Victim: Star Hollingsworth
Offenses: Murder; Endanger Child
Min/ Max Sentence: 20 Years – Life
Next Parole Hearing: May 2019

Case Summary

15-month-old Star Hollingsworth was abused her entire life by her mother’s boyfriend James Doan. He would regularly beat, burn and scald her. Star’s mother did nothing to protect her daughter. On September 29, 1993 Star was found dead in her crib. After questioning by police Doan admitted the horrific abuse he inflicted on Star the day she died. This included a karate chop that snapped her neck back. It took a jury 25 minutes to find Doan guilty of murder as well as felonious child endangering. Doan received a life sentence for his crimes. He was later adjudicated a sexual predator, the most dangerous of all sex offender classifications.

Star Hollingsworth’s Story

Five Months Of Torture and Abuse

Although Star Hollingsworth was only 15-months-old she fully understood the meaning of pain. In the five months James Doan, Star’s mother’s boyfriend, lived with her he regularly sexually abused, beat, and burned little Star. In August 1993 Star went to visit her grandmother. After noticing Star has been severely burned on her feet and that she and had numerous injuries, including a large bruise on the side of her jaw, Star’s grandmother begged Star’s mother to seek medical attention. Star’s mother did nothing claiming she was “frightened.” She claimed the bruise happened while Doan was watching Star and she fell of a chair. A month later Star would be dead.

A Horrific Murder

On the evening of September 29th, 1993 James Doan drove Star’s mother to work. Star’s mother was a bartender and worked nights while Doan babysat Star and her seven-year-old sister. On the way home Star started crying. As the crying continued Doan grew angry. After he arrived home an angry Doan violently pulled Star from the car and flung her over his shoulder, snapping her head backwards. Star became pale and started to vomit and shake. Doan did nothing to help her. He put her in her crib and left the room. When Doan went back to check on Star she was crying and had vomited in her crib. While Doan was trying to clean the vomit out of Star’s hair she continued to cry. According to Doan he got a cup of scalding hot water and threw it in Star’s face. When she did not stop crying Doan delivered a karate chop to Star’s stomach. Doan stated it was a “hard chop, probably too hard for Star.” Doan left the room leaving a suffering Star in her crib. When Star’s mother arrived home Doan told her Star had been ill that evening, was vomiting, and had burned herself in the bathtub. When Star’s mother went to check on her, Star was dead in her crib.

Star Hollingsworth
Star Hollingsworth

Paramedics arrived on the scene along with fire department personnel. After seeing the second degree burn on Star’s face they immediately suspected child abuse. Cincinnati Ohio Police brought Doan in for questioning. He gave various stories before he finally admitted that he could have done something that could have hurt her. Doan admitted to shaking Star both before and after she was burned because her crying was getting on his nerves. He also admitted delivering the karate chop and snapping her neck back. Doan was arrested and charged with the murder of Star Hollingsworth.

Child Murderer Gets Life

Deputy corner Dr. Gerber’s autopsy report reflected much more abuse. He found numerous injuries to Star Hollingsworth including bruises, contusions, injuries to her rectum and vagina, skull fracture, fractured vertebrae, injuries to the spleen, and a torn lower colon that let air escape into the abdomen. There was blood in Star’s abdomen. Dr. Gerber also found that the burn injury resembled an “immersion” injury, where Star had been dipped in scalding water with temperatures of 120-130 degrees . As there were no “splatters” or unevenness , the burn could not have occurred from thrown water as Doan claimed. The cause of death was “multiple bodily injury.”

A jury of three men and nine women heard Doan’s case. Dr. Anthony Pohlgerrs, a physician who saw Star at the hospital testified. He said the burn injury had to be caused by someone holding and object to Star’s face for about 30 seconds (a wet towel had been found at the scene). He also stated the injuries to the vagina and rectum were not accidental and were consistent with sexual abuse injuries. Star also had several older wounds which indicated endless suffering. She had old scars on her leg and the skin on her feet was peeling from older injuries. Throughout the trial, even when horrific pictures of Star’s battered body were shown, Doan showed absolutely no emotion or remorse.

It took the jury 25 minutes to find Doan guilty of murder. He was sentenced to life in prison. Doan was also found guilty of felonious child endangering and received an additional five to 15 years. The sentences were to run consecutively (back to back). At sentencing Judge Norbet Nadel stated that Doan “was not only a child abuser and a killer, but also a coward.” He said no sentence is severe enough for Doan. Once again Doan showed no emotion and no remorse. Star’s mother was also convicted in Star’s death for failing to protect her. She served 18 months in prison and is now free.

Although Doan was not convicted of a sexually assaulting Star, on November 27, 2007 the Hamilton Ohio County Court of Common Pleas found enough evidence to adjudicate Doan a sexual predator, the most dangerous of all sex offender classifications. Doan appealed this ruling and on October 15, 2008 the First District Court of Appeals affirmed the decision to label Doan a sexual predator.

No Parole

James Doan is a heartless, ruthless child killer. Doan brutally beat Star Hollingsworth and did nothing to help her as she lay dying in her crib. Doan showed Star no mercy and the State of Ohio should show Doan no mercy. While Doan has found the time to file multiple appeals he has not taken the time to show remorse for his crime. Doan has also been adjudicated a sexual predator meaning that if released he is likely to commit another sexual related crime. Releasing James Doan at any point would be a complete injustice to Star Hollingsworth and would demean his cruelty to her. In addition, placing Doan back on the streets would pose and incredible risk to the public, especially to young children. To further the interests of justice and to protect society we urge the Ohio Parole Board to deny James Doan parole and give Doan the maximum continuance of ten years at all future parole hearings.