ADA — An 18-year-old man known at East Central University for walking around in a black suit and using a cane may have targeted other students living in the freshman dorms, a suite mate says.
Jerrod Murray, of Asher, was charged Friday in Pottawatomie County with first-degree murder.
He is accused of killing fellow ECU student Generro Sanchez, who apparently was lured to his death after agreeing to give Murray a ride to a Walmart in exchange for $20.
Murray and Sanchez lived in the same dormitory on campus and knew each other, friends of the victim said Monday.
Pottawatomie County Undersheriff J.T. Palmer, who filed a probable cause affidavit for Murray's arrest Thursday, described the defendant's demeanor following his arrest.
“I asked the suspect how it made him feel,” Palmer wrote. “He said it was OK.”
When asked if he felt any remorse for killing Sanchez, the defendant gave another chilling answer, Palmer wrote.
“He said, ‘Well, I am glad I got caught by someone with your high rank, but no, I don't feel any remorse for what I did,” the undersheriff wrote.
The suite mate, Evan Jolliff, who knew both of the young men, said Murray had asked other students to take him to the Walmart over the past month.
Jolliff said his friend, who also lives in the Pesagi Hall on campus, had an altercation with Murray earlier in the semester and that some hard feelings lingered between the young men.
“He asked me, my roommate and my friend to take him to Walmart but we didn't,” he said. “It's kinda scary.”
Jolliff, who is from Lone Grove, said Murray also told people at the Ada campus that the U.S. Department of Defense was funding his education — a claim many classmates didn't believe.
“He just didn't seem right,” Jolliff said. “But I didn't ever really want to say that … didn't really want to judge him … just because he wore a suit.”
As the suspect was led away from court Friday in Shawnee, Murray told a television reporter that he wasn't proud of what he has confessed to doing to Sanchez. He also said he wasn't sorry about shooting the victim, even as the young man begged for his life.
“No, ma'am,” Murray said when asked if he had any remorse for killing Sanchez.
Pottawatomie County District Attorney Richard Smothermon said investigators searched Murray's dorm room at ECU, removing the suspect's computer and other items.
Smothermon said it's too early to say whether he will seek the death penalty in the case.
“That will come later,” he said.
Police in Asher said Murray had never been in trouble with the law. At ECU, spokeswoman Amy Ford said the suspect had the university police come to his dorm room in October on a disturbance call.
“It was nothing unusual, you know, for young guys in a college dorm,” Ford said.