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Man found strangled in motel room, police investigate

A 73-year-old man was found strangled to death Monday evening. (Source KSWO) A 73-year-old man was found strangled to death Monday evening. (Source KSWO)
Sheri Poolaw-Ramos (Source Stephens County Sheriff's Office) Sheri Poolaw-Ramos (Source Stephens County Sheriff's Office)

COMANCHE, OK (KSWO) -The Comanche Police Department is continuing their search for answers after a man was found strangled in his motel room.

Comanche Police Chief Mike Jones says his officers responded to a domestic dispute and welfare check at the Comanche Motel Monday night involving 73-year-old Archie Smith and his 49-year-old girlfriend, Sheri Poolaw-Ramos.

Chief Jones says his officers found Smith dead in his room with an article of clothing around his neck. He says there are still a lot of unanswered questions, but what he does know is the victim has no family in the area and his girlfriend was the last see him alive.

Chief Jones says he's turning to the public for leads in the case.

"If they've seen the couple, if they know the couple prior to the incident, just kind of what they were doing during the day if they had contact with them," Chief Jones said.

Chief Jones says Monday night, Smith and Poolaw-Ramos were in the middle of an argument at the Comanche Motel when Poolaw-Ramos said she decided to leave the hotel. She says she left because a few days earlier, Smith talked about hurting himself and she didn't want to argue with him anymore. She says when she returned, she found Smith dead in his room with an article of clothing around his neck. 

Poolaw-Ramos says she then left the motel and went to a friend's house to use the phone to call police.

"They were kind of suspicious about the suicide by strangulation, so they made the decision to call other agencies, OSBI," Chief Smith said when his officers arrived at the motel.

Chief Jones says once OSBI arrived, his officers went to Poolaw-Ramos’s friend's house to pick her up and question her about the incident. He says his department, along with investigators from OSBI, are trying to piece together what happened between the time Poolaw-Ramos left the hotel and returned.

At this time, Poolaw-Ramos has not been charged with a crime. However, she was arrested in connection to an outstanding warrant in Stephens County where she remains behind bars at the Stephens County Jail. 

There's no official ruling just yet, but the medical examiner working the case is leaning toward suicide in this investigation.

Chief Jones says there's no word on when the OSBI will finish their investigation.

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