Authorities say ex-lover stabbed St. Clair County assistant coach, librarian 70 times

27-year-old D'kota Chance Griffin is facing a charge of murder in connection with the death of Michael Collins. (St. Clair County Sheriff's Office)

A 27-year-old man is being charged with murder after authorities say he stabbed a well known St. Clair County assistant coach in what was described as a crime of passion.

D'kota Chance Griffin, of Lineville, is charged with murder and theft of property. The St. Clair Count Sheriff's Office said Griffin and Michael Collins has a brief, romantic relationship after meeting online.

Collins body was found in his home Monday afternoon where he was stabbed 70 times according to investigators. Assistant Sheriff Billy Murrary said it appeared Collins let Griffin into the house but declined to say what motivated the attack. “This investigation is extremely complex. You have a situation where Mr. Collins was not only stabbed numerous times, he was strangled as well."

Murray said Griffin has been cooperative with investigators during questioning. Based off the evidence they have compiled at the scene, they say they are confident Griffin was on the other end of the knife during Collins' fatal stabbing.

Less than two hours after his arrest was made public, Griffin had a bond hearing from jail via video conference with Judge Alan Furr, who allowed reporters to listen to the hearing. Griffin sounded calm and composed as he answered Furr's questions. He acknowledged the charges against him which include intentional murder and theft of property. The murder charge against him could be upgraded to capital murder as his case continues said Murray. Griffin also informed the judge he had recently been employed as a car salesman but was not currently working.

Furr granted Griffin a $510,000 combined bond for both charges. The meeting ended with Griffin asking the judge, "have a good weekend." He will make his next appearance in a courtroom on September 20th.

The news of Collins' death has shocked students, faculty and parents who knew him as a volunteer coach at St. Clair County High School and as a librarian at Odenville Middle School. Collins was expected to be remembered Friday evening with a balloon ceremony at halftime of St. Clair County's season opening jamboree game vs. John Carroll Catholic. A vigil was held Tuesday night to remember and honor the librarian and coach at St. Clair County High School.

"To me he was more valuable than any coach on my staff," said St. Clair County head football coach Matt Glover.

WATCH: Sheriff's Office holds news conference on arrest of man in connection with death of Michael Collins.

The St. Clair County Sheriff's Office was assisted in the investigation by St. Clair County District Attorney's Office, FBI Gadsden, U.S. Marshall's Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force, Jacksonville Police Department, Alabama State Fire Marshall's Office, Oxford Police Department, Calhoun County Sheriff's Office, Calhoun County District Attorney's Office and the Center for Applied Forensics at Jacksonville State University.

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