Officials with the Walker County Sheriff’s Office and the Jasper Police Department announced Monday afternoon that 20-year-old Ralonte Terrell Swain confessed to killing 24-year-old Jesse “Money G.” Brandon Joseph of Jasper earlier this year.
Walker County Sheriff John Mark Tirey said Swain confessed Saturday to investigators from both law enforcement agencies. At the time of the confession, Swain was being held in the Walker County Jail on unrelated charges.
“Our office and the Jasper Police Department have worked in cooperation throughout this investigation,” Tirey said. “Swain developed as a suspect early on thanks to our two agencies sharing information.”
Tirey said he expects a plea hearing to take place later this week.
“We’ve been in constant contact with Walker County District Attorney Bill Adair, and we expect Swain will enter a plea before the end of the week,” Tirey said.
Joseph was reported missing to the Jasper Police Department by family members on June 10. A day later, Jasper officers found Joseph’s body in an area on Florida Avenue just outside the city limits. “It was our case, but it was so close to Jasper that we enlisted the help of the city’s police force,” Tirey said. “We primarily deal with the rural areas of our county. We are not as familiar with the criminal element of Jasper. Investigators with the Jasper Police Department and Police Chief Connie Rowe were vital in this crime being solved.”
Sheriff’s Office Investigator Randy Sanford agreed that help from JPD was a key in solving the case.
“The work the Jasper Police Department put into this case speaks volumes,” Sanford said.
Rowe said her department is determined to see major crimes in the area solved as quickly as possible. She said the combined effort between JPD and the sheriff’s office is a must when dealing with violent crimes.
“When we can combine our resources, it helps all of us to solve crimes,” she said. “Investigators from both agencies worked tirelessly on this case. District Attorney Bill Adair was also with us throughout the weekend, working on this case. All of us working together is a great thing for all of Walker County.”
No formal charges have been filed against Swain, but he is in custody and being held in the county jail. Tirey said Swain is facing charges in Joseph’s death and in an unrelated robbery.