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Press Release

Pittsburg County Residents Sentenced For Murder In Indian Country And Accessory After The Fact

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Oklahoma

MUSKOGEE, OKLAHOMA – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma announces that Jimmy Holmes Nace, age 50, and Matthew Jennings Vermillion, age 44, both of Pittsburg County, Oklahoma, were sentenced for their roles in a homicide that occurred in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma.  Nace was sentenced to 180 months for Murder in Indian Country – Second Degree on May 4, 2023.  Vermillion was sentenced to 102 months for Accessory After the Fact to the murder on March 27, 2023.

The charges arose from an investigation by the Pittsburg County Sheriff’s Office, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Army Criminal Investigations Command at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

On July 3, 2019, Nace assaulted an individual, and—together with Vermillion and a third individual—transported the victim to a rural community cemetery in Vermillion’s truck.  Once at the cemetery, Nace and the third individual killed the victim before Nace lit the body on fire.

On January 20, 2022, Vermillion pleaded guilty to one count of Accessory After the Fact to a murder.  On March 14, 2022, the eve of trial, Nace pleaded guilty to one count of Murder in Indian Country – Second Degree.

“The cooperative efforts of county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies investigating this horrible crime resulted in the defendants being prosecuted and imprisoned for their actions,” said United States Attorney Christopher J. Wilson.

“Today’s sentencing holds both defendants accountable for the callous and brutal murder of an innocent man,” said FBI Oklahoma City Special Agent in Charge Edward J. Gray. “We hope it will bring a sense of closure to the victim’s family, while affirming the FBI’s commitment to pursuing justice for those affected by violence.”

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma prosecuted this case because the victim was a member of a federally recognized Indian tribe and the crime occurred in Pittsburg County, which is within the boundaries of the Choctaw Nation Reservation and the Eastern District of Oklahoma.

The Honorable Ronald A. White, United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, presided over the case and sentenced Nace and Vermillion in Muskogee, Oklahoma.  Nace and Vermillion were remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshal at the conclusion of their sentencing.  They will remain in custody pending transportation to a designated United States Bureau of Prisons facility to serve their sentence of incarceration.

Assistant United States Attorney Cameron McEwen represented the United States.

Updated May 12, 2023

Violent Crime
Indian Country Law and Justice