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Accused serial killer, Ryan Sharpe, says he was ‘filling tags’ as part of big case with federal agencies

Published: Dec. 11, 2019 at 11:43 AM CST
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Attorneys for both sides finished their opening statements on Wednesday, Dec. 11 in the first of what could be several trials for accused serial killer, Ryan Sharpe.

This trial is for the killing of Brad DeFranceschi.

During opening statements, District Attorney Sam D’Aquilla said DeFranceschi was a “fearless father.” He was cutting grass in his yard while his wife and son were inside the house when he was shot and killed. DeFranceschi’s wife says she heard a loud “cracking” noise and then saw her husband fall backwards. She tried to stop his bleeding, but he died in her arms around 11:20 a.m., D’Aquilla said.

Twelve jurors were selected Dec. 10 for the East Feliciana Parish trial. One alternate juror was also selected.

Sharpe’s defense attorney, Tommy D’Amico, argued Sharped was a talented, hardworking, self-taught plumber who owned his own business. He also said a few months before the killings, Sharpe’s friends noticed he was showing some bizarre behavior and was isolating himself, rambling, and becoming more and more paranoid. Sharpe reportedly stopped talking to friends, was ignoring calls, and neglecting his business.

D’Amico said before the killings, Sharpe’s father found $7,000 worth of checks that hadn’t been cashed. He asked the jury to keep an open mind.

Sharpe is accused of shooting three men in East Feliciana Parish and a fourth in East Baton Rouge Parish. He faces charges of murder in the deaths of Brad DeFranceschi, who was shot on Boy Scout property, and Thomas Bass, who was shot in his yard.

He’s accused of attempted murder in the wounding of Buck Hornsby.

During interrogation, Sharpe said to investigators, “I shot him, yes sir." Sharped also said the killing happened in the moment. Sharpe claimed he was working a big federal case with different agencies and had so many “tags” to fill.

“When I fill tags, I’m supposed to call and turn it in,” Sharpe said. “I don’t go around shooting people for the fun of it.”

Sharped went of to claim he was supposed to call in tags one at a time or he wouldn’t get “credit.”

“If I wouldn’t have gotten picked up in two days, two or three tags would’ve been filled,” he said.

Sharpe said he didn’t call in the killing of Bass because he got nervous and then “got out of there" and went back home. He said he knew Bass and that his death was a vote among the special forces, state police, etc. to kill him. Sharpe called Bass a “good guy.”

Sharpe will face an East Baton Rouge Parish jury for the murder of former BREC commissioner, Carroll Breeden, in June of 2020.

A motion filed for a change of venue from East Feliciana Parish is still pending.

Sharpe has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

Copyright 2019 WAFB. All rights reserved.

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