According to wife, man shoots friend for embracing her

Ricky Jay Reynolds. Photo Source: Smith County Jail.
Ricky Jay Reynolds. Photo Source: Smith County Jail.

By Jena Johnson - bio | email | Twitter

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - An East Texas man was shot dead, and authorities say it was all because of a kiss. Smith County Sheriff's officials say 39-year old Chad Otis Jones of Arlington was shot and killed late Sunday night on County Road 21.

The alleged shooter, 45-year-old Ricky Jay Reynolds, reportedly shot Jones after authorities say he saw his wife kissing Jones on the cheek. A neighbor and family friend of Reynolds is in shock. Brockton Smith says he never saw Reynolds arguing with his wife once.

"I can't... I can't grip this," said Brockton Smith, neighbor and family friend. "It's weird. It's very weird and like I said I've never known Eva and Ricky to have an argument."

Smith is trying to make sense of what authorities call a senseless crime. Ricky Reynolds is accused of shooting his friend, Chad Jones in what appears to be a jealous rage.

"We're being told the wife kissed the victim on the cheek," said Lt. Tony Dana with the Smith County Sheriff's Office. "The husband had come to the residence as well and he saw this happening through the window of the residence. He saw his wife kissing the victim."

Authorities say it was that kiss on the cheek that sparked Reynolds to return with a handgun. Jones was found shot in the head on the kitchen floor.

After the shooting, authorities say Reynolds hopped in his truck and took off. Authorities engaged in a low-speed chase for about ten miles to the intersection of County Road 230 and 2142 where Reynolds was arrested.

"I'm trying to process this and it's not going over very well and I guess it won't until I see him and talk to him [Ricky Reynolds] myself," said a devastated Smith.

Jones was living in Eva Reynolds brother's home. Her brother had recently passed away and Jones needed a place to stay.

"He had fell on some hard times," said Dana. "He was an acquaintance of the family and they were allowing him to stay at this residence until he got back up on his feet."

Sunday night after the shooting, Smith says he consoled Eva.

"She was crying," he said. "She was highly upset. She said that all she was trying to do was help someone and she hate that it happened and she don't understand why."

Smith says she didn't mention a kiss, but he says she felt a sense of guilt.

"She feel that she might have been at fault for just caring for someone, trying to help someone," he said.

A possible motive for a crime Smith is still trying to understand. As of Monday night, Reynolds was being in the Smith County Jail on a $275,000 bond. He's charged with murder, evading arrest and unlawful carrying of a firearm.

KLTV 7 News tried to reach Eva Reynolds for comment, but was unsuccessful.

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