Marty L. Rainey, the former Gasconade County, Missouri deputy in Set. Genevieve County jail for multiple state and federal charges alleging he sexually assaulted several women, one of whom was underage, was found dead in his cell Saturday morning.
Ste. Genevieve County Sheriff’s Major Jason Schott said the Missouri State Highway Patrol was investigating an “in-custody death,” which is standard procedure. “At this point, it appears to be a suicide, but the investigation is ongoing,” he said.
Schott, St. Louis Today reported, declined to answer specific questions about the on-going investigation, including whether Rainey, 52, had been on suicide watch at the time. He told the newspaper that investigators were viewing video from the jail cameras and interviewing staff.
At the time of Rainey’s death, his attorney, Christian Goeke was seeking Rainey’s release on bail before the criminal trial in federal court. Concerns about Rainey’s mental health had been raised by federal prosecutors as grounds for denying bail.
The other reason prosecutors did not want the former cop released was solely based on the severity of his crimes and threat he posed to the public.
Criminal court documents say Rainey threatened or coerced six women into having sex with him, a friend, or both, sometimes while he was in uniform. One of the females was younger than 17 at the time.
Other women said Rainey had tried to force them or succeeded in forcing them to strip so he could photograph their genitals.
Rainey resigned from law enforcement in November 2012 after the first woman came forward about an unwanted sexual relationship with the deputy. Prosecutors say his many crimes occurred between 2010 and 2012. One “Jane Doe” alleges that Sheriff Randy Esphorst should have known that Rainey was a predator by then and has also named him in a civil case.
In January 2015, Rainey was charged in state court with “acceding to corruption by a public servant, sexual assault, statutory rape and use of a child in a sexual performance.”
On March 2, a federal court indicted Rainey with four counts of deprivation of rights under color of law and enticement of a minor to engage in a commercial sex act.
Rainey did not always act alone and sometimes included a friend in sexual assault, according to charging documents.
Rainey’s friend, Jonathan Pohlmann, 47, pleaded guilty Monday to a federal charge of conspiracy to violate civil rights. Although his plea agreement was sealed, he was accused of conspiring with Rainey to “injure, oppress, threaten, and intimidate” women with whom Rainey came in contact while on duty. The acts “resulted in bodily injury,” charging documents say.
Rainey was facing a possible life sentence if convicted.