Correction: An incorrect photo of Jeremy Reece originally appeared with this story. The photo has been corrected.
Federal prosecutors filed a second-degree murder charge Monday in connection with the 2015 slaying of a Pawhuska man after state charges appeared to go nowhere.
Jeremy Keith Reece, 35, was charged in Tulsa federal court with shooting a man described in court papers only as “R.H.”
Reece has been held in the Osage County jail since 2015 in connection with the death of Rick Holt, a Pawhuska oilman.
Holt, 46, was seen leaving the Pawhuska Golf & Country Club on the morning of Sept. 5, 2015.
Osage County sheriff’s officials began investigating Holt’s disappearance after he was reported missing.
Their investigation led them to Reece, who led authorities to an oil lease in Osage County, where Holt’s remains were found in a shallow grave. He had been shot multiple times, and his body was burned.
An affidavit filed in connection with the Osage County District Court case alleged that Jeremy Reece was angry over photos of his ex-wife that reportedly were sent to him from Holt’s phone.
Holt had been in an “on-again off-again relationship” with Claudette Reece for over a month, according to court records.
Jeremy Reece told authorities that he killed Holt during a confrontation on the victim’s 40-acre ranch, records allege.
Reece was arrested along with his brother, Tyler Wayne Reece, 22. Both were still being held Monday afternoon in the Osage County jail, according to online records.
State prosecutors have fought to try the brothers for murder in state court since Osage County Special Judge Stuart Tate first dismissed the case because the homicide appeared to have occurred on tribal land and both defendants are tribal members.
Crimes occurring on tribal land are generally the jurisdiction of federal or tribal courts.
Peter Astor, capital trial counsel with the Oklahoma Indigent Defense System, said he anticipates Jeremy Reece’s Osage County District Court charges will be dropped now that Reece has been charged in federal court.
The Reece brothers have both been jailed without bond since their arrests Sept. 9, 2015.
The Reeces both faced charges of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, kidnapping and desecration of a human corpse. The first-degree murder charge was later amended to felony murder.
The case has seen little movement in state court after the state Court of Criminal Appeals issued a ruling in 2017 that stayed the criminal case until the jurisdictional issues could be worked out.
Tyler Reece, whose charges are still pending in state court, has not been charged in federal court, records show.