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Ex-Memphis star Baskerville Holmes dead

March 19, 1997

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) _ Baskerville Holmes, who took his name from a Sherlock Holmes story and played for Memphis in the 1985 Final Four, was found shot to death with his girlfriend in an apparent murder-suicide, police said.

A television station reported that Holmes called police and said he accidentally shot his girlfriend, then shot himself a few minutes later. Police would not confirm that report.

Holmes, 32, and Tanya Franklin were dead when police arrived at their home Tuesday morning. Lt. Richard True of the Memphis Police Department said they were investigating the deaths as a murder-suicide.

``I’m in a state of shock,″ said Dana Kirk, who coached Holmes at Memphis. ``I’m in a state of shock. It’s completely set me back a step or two.″

WHBQ-TV said Holmes placed the 911 call to police at 6:35 a.m. CST before going into a back bedroom and shooting himself. Three children were at home at the time of the shooting.

True refused to say who made the 911 call and how many times Franklin and Holmes had been shot. He said police had recovered a handgun and had a witness to the shooting of one victim. He would not elaborate.

Family members told WHBQ Holmes was upset after being laid off from his job at a trucking company.

Franklin and Holmes had dated the past six years and had one child together, a toddler who was in the home with Franklin’s two other children. All three children were taken to their grandparents after the shootings.

Holmes played for Memphis State from 1982-1986 and was a member of the 1985 squad that lost to Villanova 52-45 in the semifinals. That Final Four squad was led by center Keith Lee.

While at Memphis State, Holmes received as much attention for his name as he did for his athletic abilities. Dana Kirk, his coach at the time, said Holmes’ mother chose the name after reading ``The Hound of the Baskervilles″ Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

``I know he got more publicity than anyone had ever seen because of the name,″ Kirk said. ``Everywhere we went, someone would ask me or him about his name.″

Kirk said Holmes, who played in Europe after leaving Memphis State, talked last fall of trying to play once again.

Holmes was tied with teammate Andre Turner for the most career games (132) at Memphis State, now the University of Memphis. Holmes was named to the All-Metro Conference tournament team in 1985 and 1986 and was a member of the second-team All-Metro Conference in 1986.

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