Officials from the Northampton County District Attorney's office say the motive was revenge.
The case against Jacob Holmes, Jr. revolves around the murder of Miguel Aponte inside the Easton Cafe in 2009.
The case went cold until an alleged accomplice named Holmes in a grand jury report a few years ago.
Investigators say the new leads that surfaced from that report eventually led to Holmes' arrest Tuesday.
He is now being held without bail after being arraigned Wednesday morning.
Northampton County DA John Morganelli says Holmes was always on the radar in this case.
"This was a case that we felt based on the police work was solvable, but we had to make sure that we had everyone in place to be able to prove this in court, obviously," Morganelli said.
But the suspect's father, Jacob Holmes, Sr., who is the brother of former heavyweight boxing champ Larry Holmes, says his son was home with him on the night of the murder. Holmes, Sr. says charges were not filed back in 2009 because the evidence was and remains flimsy.
Holmes, Sr. also says because of the last name, if anyone in his family committed a crime in the Lehigh Valley, they would be found and arrested right away.
"I'm a Holmes. If I do something, everybody in the valley knows it. So why would I be stupid enough to do something? If I hit you, everybody else knows I'm a Holmes, I'm going to get told on," Holmes, Sr. said.
But Miguel Aponte's brother Nicholas says he is certain that authorities have the right man. And while he has been able to forgive the person who killed his brother, he will be glad when this ordeal is finally over.
"I wish his family the best. I think overall my family is ready for justice to finally be served and come to closure at this point," Nicholas Aponte said.
Holmes, Jr. faces charges including first degree murder charges.
Send a breaking news alert
Report a correction or typo
Learn more about the 6abc apps