On Wednesday afternoon, Bill Sharpe said he posted on his Facebook page that he was hoping law enforcement had found their big break in the four shootings that had terrorized the Bluff Creek area.
News had begun to spread that police had, maybe, identified a suspect in the shootings. They did, but the breakthrough in the case was the arrest of Sharpe's 36-year-old son, Ryan Sharpe.
"I'm in total shock," said Bill Sharpe, of Ethel. "We were close, I didn't see him everyday, but we talked occasionally and I kept up with him. But this is a total shock."
Ryan Sharpe is accused in a killing spree that started in July, when Thomas Bass, 62, was found dead on the floor of his carport of his East Feliciana Parish home. The next victim, 47-year-old Buck Hornsby, was shot in a drive-by on Sept. 12 while exercising near Highway 63 on the edge of his property. Hornsby survived.
A week later, Carroll Breeden, 66, was shot to death while doing yard work by the road in front his Pride home, also in a drive-by shooting. On October 9, Brad DeFranceschi, 48, was shot to death as he did yard work in the front of his house at the Avondale Scout Reservation near Clinton.
A police reports says the bullets recovered from the Breeden and DeFranceschi scenes match, with Ryan Sharpe eventually developed as a suspect. He confessed to all of the crimes when interviewed by detectives Wednesday night, officials said.
A Clinton man suspected in three fatal drive-by shootings -- one in East Baton Rouge Parish …
Ryan Sharpe was booked into the East Baton Rouge Parish jail on Wednesday on a first-degree murder count, along with illegal use of a weapon and assault as a drive-by shooting. He is expected to be booked with first-degree murder and attempted murder in the East Feliciana shootings.
Bill Sharpe said Thursday morning he had yet to talk to his son or see him since the arrest.
"I'm in the dark," Bill Sharpe said. "It's totally out of character for him."
Sharpe said his son is a hard-working plumber who loved to rabbit hunt. Sharpe went Thursday morning to check on the more than 10 beagles his son had at his house.
"I'm in shock of what he allegedly did, but I'm also sorry for the families that were impacted by this."
Ryan Sharpe grew up in Central and went to Central High School, his dad said.
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