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Minnehaha County's Role in Montana Cold Case

May 2, 2014, 10:09 PM by Brady Mallory

Minnehaha County's Role in Montana Cold Case
Thomas Jaraceski | 1996


Agencies from multiple states worked together to arrest a suspect in a Montana cold case murder. Authorities arrested 41-year-old Thomas Jaraceski in Sioux Falls, and according to court papers, he faces charges for killing a man following a relationship that ended in 1996.

Sgt. Jason Gearman with the Minnehaha County Sheriff's Office said investigators from Montana contacted his office saying there was a man living in Brandon they wanted to bring in and question about a murder that happened nearly 20 years ago.

"It's not like this guy was, you know, hiding under some assumed name. They just re-opened the case. They knew where he lived," Gearman said.

According to court papers, Jaraczeski shot and killed veterinarian Dr. Brian Rein who was dating Jaraczeski's ex-girlfriend, Ann Wishman.  Rein was found dead on the kitchen floor of his trailer house with his .357 Magnum near his left hand with two gunshot wounds to his right arm and one gunshot wound to his chest.

At the moment, Montana officials are not saying what new information recently became available and renewed their interest in Jaraczeski. Though Gearman said Minnehaha County is not really involved with this investigation, he said technology helps agencies work closely when some extra help is needed in other parts of the country.

"The information flows so much easier now, and the only way to catch these people from state to state is through teamwork like that," Gearman said.

A cold case for nearly 20 years, Gearman hopes the family of the victim will soon fine closure.

"At least somebody has been charged, and what happens next is up to the courts," Gearman said.

We checked to see whether Jaraczeski had a criminal history.  The Clerk of Courts in Teton County Montana says there is nothing else filed.  In Minnehaha County, however, it shows his ex-wife filed a protection order in 2008.  It was later dropped.

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