Jay Edward Ostrem, the former mayor of Centerville, South Dakota, was arrested on Monday for allegedly murdering three people.

Ostrem, 64, is accused of killing three people after “becoming enraged over a neighbor allegedly sexually assaulting a family member,” the New York Post reports.

“South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley announces that a 64-year-old Centerville man has been charged with three counts of First Degree Murder in connection with the shooting deaths of three people Monday night in Centerville,” South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley’s office announced in a press release.

“Jay Ostrem (Ah-strum) is being held on a $1 million cash only bond in the Minnehaha County Jail,” it added.

“Jay Ostrem has been arrested and charged with three counts of First Degree Murder, and law enforcement has secured the scene,” said Jackley.

“There is no further threat to the public,” he added.

KELO reports:

According to a filed complaint, former Centerville mayor and city councilor Jay Edward Ostrem killed three victims on Monday, May 27, 2024 “with a premeditated design.” According to lawsuits filed against him, Ostrem previously served as a city councilor and as mayor in Centerville in 2010.

Ostrem was booked into the Minnehaha County Jail on a $1 million cash only bond.

According to the South Dakota Attorney General’s Office, the incident happened around 10 p.m. Monday at a residence in Centerville.

Court papers say that at 9:44 p.m. Monday, a man described as “frantic” called 911 and reported a shooting, telling the operator that his family member had been shot and killed with a shotgun.

The caller told 911 the shooter was a man from across the street, and he had gone back to his house. While on the phone with 911, the caller told the dispatcher he had also been shot, and shortly thereafter stopped communicating with the dispatcher.

When law enforcement arrived on scene, they saw Ostrem leave his house. Despite being told to stop, he continued walking west along Main Street. According to the affidavit, a Game, Fish and Parks officer who responded made contact with Ostrem down the street and demanded he get on the ground.

Ostrem obeyed this command and told the officer he had a gun in his pocket.

From the New York Post:

When officers approached, they noticed that Ostrem had an AR-style rifle on the ground near him. He was also bleeding from his left hand and smelled of alcohol.

Officers then found a .380 handgun in Ostrem’s pocket, as well as spent shotgun shell casings and at least one spent rifle casing.

When the police entered the home where the 911 call was made from, they found three people dead from apparent gunshot wounds.

The investigators moved on to Ostrem’s house, where one of his adult family members told them that a neighbor had been at their home on Thursday night, while Ostrem was sleeping.

The family member claimed that she and the neighbor were drinking, and then he forcibly kissed her, exposed himself to her, and pressed himself against her, the court papers said.

The woman explained that she told Ostrem about the assault on Monday, and then “got up and went raging out of the house.”

Ostrem did not say anything as he left, and she did not know where he was going, the woman claimed.

She also said that she did not see Ostrem again until law enforcement arrived at the scene.


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