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Erath County jury finds Andrea Holt guilty of exploiting an elderly person, not guilty of theft.

Andrea Holt takes the stand in her own defense on Wednesday while Judge Jason Cashon and District Attorney Alan Nash look on.

In a stunning decision by an Erath County jury on Wednesday, Andrea Holt was found not guilty of theft by check, but guilty of exploitation of an elderly individual.

Sentencing will take place on Thursday.

Jurors deliberated for more than six hours Wednesday before finally reaching their decision shortly after 9 p.m.

Over the two-day trial, District Attorney Alan Nash presented evidence that Holt wrote 44 fraudulent checks to herself from Mrs. Riggs’ checking accounts totaling $79,200 over a 2 ½ month period.

Judy Riggs-Burris testified that her mother was “devasted” when she learned that Holt had stolen the money.

“She had grown to be close to Andrea and cared about her as a person,” Riggs-Burris said.

On Wednesday, Holt’s attorney Angie Hadley claimed the checks her client cashed were all signed by Mrs. Riggs and were payment for “bookkeeping” that Holt had done for her the year before.

While the defense tried to paint Mrs. Riggs as a curmudgeon who fired caregivers for small infractions and refused to pay them for extra work, Holt claimed that Mrs. Riggs was exceedingly generous with her; gifting her with tens of thousands of dollars for things like school clothes for her sons and paint and carpet for her townhome.

Holt said Mrs. Riggs accused her of stealing the money to prevent her children from discovering that she had actually given it to her.

“It just hurts my feelings that she did this to me,” Holt said while crying on the stand.


Mrs. Riggs passed away on July 20, 2022 at the age of 92.

I spoke with her daughter after the verdict and she told me that her mother never recovered from Holt’s misdeeds.

“It took a tremendous emotional and physical toll on her,” Riggs-Burris said. “She felt used and she could not believe that she had been so blind.

“She felt guilty because she thought she lost some of the money she and my dad worked so hard for.”

Mrs. Riggs was moved into a nursing home in April 2021 where she spent the remainder of her life.



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