Former South Dakota Mayor Charged With Triple Homicide On Memorial Day

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Triple Homicide
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A former mayor from a South Dakota town has been implicated in a triple homicide that took place on Monday night in the town he formerly governed.

Small town lawmaker allegedly committed triple homicide

Jay Ostrem, 64, faces three charges of first-degree murder and is currently detained in the Minnehaha County Jail with a bail set at $1 million, South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley remarked in a Tuesday announcement.

“There is no further threat to the public,” Jackley assured after the arrest was made.

The probable cause affidavit named the victims as two brothers, Paul Frankus, 26, and his 21-year-old brother Zach, along with Timothy Richmond, 35.

Frankus told a 911 dispatcher that he had been shot during a “frantic” call for help, before he abruptly stopped speaking.
Authorities responded quickly to the residence the call originated from, and a Game Fish and Parks officer observed Ostrem exiting the home which was later determined to be a crime scene.

Ostrem reportedly disregarded law enforcement’s commands to halt, but eventually laid down on the ground and was arrested shortly thereafter.

An AR-style rifle was found close to Ostrem, and a handgun was discovered in his pocket.

Responding police officers observed that Ostrem was bleeding from his left hand and detected the odor of alcohol when they approached him.

Police then entered the home where the emergency call came from and found the three deceased victims.

Former mayor commits triple homicide over wife’s sexual assault

Ostrem’s wife informed police that their neighbor, Paul Frankus, had sexually assaulted her on Thursday, but she didn’t tell her husband about it until the evening of Memorial Day.

The woman had been having a drink with Frankus, when he kissed her without consent, exposed himself, and pressed his genitals against her.

After she told her husband about the incident days later, Ostrem “got up and went raging out of the house.”

She told the police that her husband did not disclose his destination and left without any of the weapons he kept in their house.

His wife did acknowledge that he had probably kept the guns used in the crime in his vehicle.

Ostrem was booked into the Minnehaha County Jail, where he currently remains. Court documents reveal that Ostrem is representing himself legally.

Despite taking on his own case, Ostrem is not a lawyer, but does has a background in law enforcement, with over two decades of service in Wyoming and South Dakota.

He became Centerville’s mayor in May 2009, but resigned after two-and-a-half years in November 2011. City records did not clarify the reasons behind Ostrem’s resignation.

However, his early exit could be related to the federal lawsuit that Centerville’s former police chief filed a federal lawsuit against both the town and Ostrem in July 2010.

The more than 14-year-old lawsuit, which is remarkably still ongoing, accused Ostrem of sexual harassment.

“Ostrem also made gender-based comments … which were unwelcome and degrading,” the lawsuit asserted.

The suit alleged that he made unwanted comments about menstruation, “a man’s job,” and the about how women are allegedly unable to become as successful as men.

According to the lawsuit, the former police chief, who is a woman, faced no disciplinary action or reports against her until she reported discrimination to the state’s Division of Human Rights in October 2009.

Alabama assistant principal charged in connection with triple homicide

An assistant principal in Alabama has been detained and is awaiting extradition to Georgia, after being accused of involvement in a horrific triple murder from over a decade ago.

Last week, Keante Harris, a 45-year-old assistant principal at McAdory Middle School in McCalla, Alabama, surrendered to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office on a fugitive warrant.

Shortly thereafter, he completed the necessary documentation for his extradition to Georgia, where he faces three counts of malice murder.

These charges stem from an incident in January 2013. On January 13 of that year, police discovered the bodies of three victims—Cheryl Colquitt-Thompson, Quinones King, and Rodney Cottrell, all from Alabama—in an abandoned vehicle on an exit ramp in Fulton County, Georgia.

Authorities suspect that the victims were lured to a residence in Jonesboro, Georgia, forcibly taken inside at gunpoint, subjected to torture, and subsequently killed before being left in the abandoned car. Two of the victims suffocated, and the third was strangled.

Harris is among four suspects arrested and charged with three counts of malice murder in connection to the case. The other suspects are Kenneth Thompson, Kevin Harris, and Darrell Harris. Law enforcement has not disclosed the details of how they solved the case 11 and a half years later.

Harris is anticipated to be transferred to Georgia’s custody by May 28, likely resulting in the dismissal of his fugitive of justice charge in Alabama.

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