Grundy County, TN (WRCB) -- Prosecutors say the Grundy County man accused of murdering his brother-in-law and then setting his house on fire back in June admitted the whole thing to his mother.
Sean Landolt was in court for a preliminary hearing Thursday morning. A lot of new information was revealed at the hearing, including gruesome details about how and when Jeremy Meeks died . The testimony places Landolt at Meeks house, just minutes before neighbors heard an explosion.
An emotionless Sean Landolt entered Grundy County's courtroom, coming face to face with the family of Jeremy Meeks. For the next hour, they listened as prosecutors unveiled evidence they believe proves Landolt killed his brother-in-law.
"I never knew I could hate this way, and I don't like hating this way," explained Meeks' aunt, Angela Nance. "It is very hard."
Dustin Nunley testified he was with Landolt the day Meeks was murdered. He says the two were drinking at a bar in Tracy City that afternoon. Later that night, Nunley took Landolt to a house next-door to meeks.
"I told him I was going home and going to bed," testified Nunley. Asst. District Attorney Steve Strain, questioned, "So, you don' t know if he went inside Grady Lockhart's house or where he went from there?" Nunley replied, "I don't know."
Lewis Yarworth lives on the same street as Meeks. He told the court he heard an explosion at 11:22 p.m. When he looked out the window, Yarworth says he spotted a fire.
Arson investigator Craig Frost also took the stand. He said the fire was intentionally set, possibly as a cover-up.
"A rifle was located approximately three to four feet away from the victim's legs," explained Frost. Meeks suffered one gunshot wound to the chest. He also had trauma to the head, from an apparent beating.
But perhaps, the most convicting evidence, came at the end of the hearing. That's when Strain read a statement Landolt's mother gave the TBI.
"Her son called her, and wanted her to arrange for him to get a plane ticket to Ft. Lauderdale," explained Strain. "When she asked why, he said that he had shot Jeremy and burned the house down."
"I'd like for him to tell me why he wanted Jeremy dead," said Nance, after the hearing ended. "I don't understand that. Jeremy just worked. Jeremy just wanted to see his daughter happy, and that's all."
Judge William Anderson bound Sean Landolt's case over to the grand jury. It's scheduled to meet again in November. That's when jurors will determine exactly what, if any, charges Landolt will face. Until then, Landolt is being held in the Franklin County Jail.