The man suspected of killing the Sequoyah County Sheriff’s father is back in Oklahoma.
Deputies say he stole the victim’s truck and drove to Memphis.
Deputies and agents from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation interviewed Ricky Rainwater in Tennessee before bringing him to the Cherokee County Jail. They say he admitted to putting the victim, Larry Lane Sr., in a choke hold and strangling him.
Deputies say Rainwater and Lane knew each other, but Rainwater wouldn’t state a reason for the killing.
“That’s probably something we’ll never know,” said Cherokee County Undersheriff Jason Chennault.
Rainwater told investigators he had been drinking and he got lost and called Lane for help before killing him.
For Undersheriff Chennault and others, the loss is personal. The victim’s son, Larry Lane Jr., worked with a local drug task force before becoming the sheriff in Sequoyah County.
“They’re more like family to use than they are friends, just because we’ve worked together for so long,” said Chennault. “He’s the type of guy that if you don’t know him, you’re missing something. I hate it for him.”
In a statement, the Sequoyah County Sheriff’s Office says, in part, “We … ask that you continue to remember Sheriff Lane, his brother Chad and the rest of the family in your prayers. We are happy the suspect is in custody.”
Rainwater is currently in jail for stealing a vehicle, but investigators say they expect a murder charge Thursday.
The medical examiner’s officer has not officially determined a cause of death, but we’re told a bone in the victim’s throat was broken.