TULSA, Okla. – A man charged with a 2015 murder occurring in Osage County pleaded guilty in federal court Thursday to murder in the second degree, announced U.S. Attorney Trent Shores.
Jeremy Keith Reece, 35, a member of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, admitted that he intentionally shot and killed the victim in Osage Nation Indian Country on Sept. 5, 2015. During the change of plea hearing and according to the plea agreement, Reece took the victim from his residence then transported him to Osage Nation Indian Country where Reece shot the victim three times. Reece then dug a shallow grave, placed the victim in the grave, and set the victim’s body on fire.
“In 2015, Jeremy Reece callously murdered Rick Holt on the lands of the Osage Nation. Heinous acts such as those committed by Reece will not go unpunished in the Northern District of Oklahoma. This United States Attorney’s Office takes seriously its special trust responsibility to prosecute violent crimes in Indian Country,” said U.S. Attorney Trent Shores. “Assistant United States Attorney and Tribal Liaison Shannon Cozzoni worked closely with Osage County District Attorney Mike Fisher to move this case forward and secure justice for the victim and his family. I would note that this investigation is ongoing and we will not rest until we have held accountable all those responsible for this senseless act of violence.”
"While there can never be a resolution to Mr. Holt's murder that can return him to his family and friends, the District Attorney's Office is thankful for the tireless efforts and assistance of the U.S. Attorney's Office in bringing some closure to those who knew and cared about Rick," said Osage County District Attorney Mike Fisher.
The murder case was originally filed in state court but in 2017, following an adverse ruling at the district court level that the State of Oklahoma did not have jurisdiction to prosecute the case, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals issued a ruling staying the case until jurisdictional issues were resolved.
Chief U.S. District Judge John E. Dowdell remanded Reece into the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service and set sentencing for May 6, 2020.
This prosecution is the joint effort of the Osage County District Attorney and the United States Attorney’s Office. The investigation was conducted by the Osage County Sheriff’s Office, Pawhuska Police Department, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, Osage Nation Police Department and the FBI.