Home News Officer shot, killed during standoff in Alabama

Officer shot, killed during standoff in Alabama


Nicole Hensley
New York Daily News

A man found dead after an hours-long standoff is believed to have killed his ex-wife and then a Mobile, Ala., police officer, authorities said Wednesday.

The suspect, Robert Hollie, opened fire on several officers closing in on a home Tuesday night after learning he was a person of interest in the woman’s death.

The gunfire struck Officer Justin Billa, Mobile police Chief Lawrence Battiste said. He later died at a nearby hospital.

Battiste offered few details on the killings while speaking outside the hospital, adding that he had to step away to speak with the slain officer’s wife.

Billa joined the Mobile police force in January 2016, according to the Mobile Police Department’s website. He was named officer of the month just six months on the job for tracking down and arresting a repeat robber.

Battiste said another officer managed to return fire, but it’s unclear if Hollie died by police gunfire or took his own life.

The chief identified Hollie’s ex-wife as Fonda Poellnitz. She was found dead at around 10 pm., about two miles southwest of the standoff in the Toulminville community.

Poellnitz’s distraught daughter, Octavia Poellnitz, said officers told her she was shot and found dead in a road a block from her home.

“Why would you do that to my momma,” she said through tears during an interview with WKRG-TV. “You shot my momma. You beat my momma and pushed her out her car and left her in the middle of the street.”

She said Poellnitz and Hollie had a volatile relationship.

“Love is blind,” she added.


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