On the night of January 26th, police stormed the small town of Wolf Creek in southwestern Oregon.
Five days later, Benjamin Obadiah Foster was dead. She was found by police hiding in the basement of a house near Grants Pass, the same house where the victim had been found unconscious and tied up a week earlier. rice field.
During that time, Foster broke into another home, killed two strangers, and left a gruesome scene to escape one of the state’s biggest raids in recent memory, police said Wednesday.
In 2019, Foster held and tortured his then-girlfriend in a Las Vegas apartment for two weeks. Police say he had seven broken ribs, had his eyes blackened, was strangled and unconscious, and was forced to eat bleach before escaping.
Foster had already received a suspended sentence for an illegal weapons offense and was awaiting trial in another domestic violence case.
He was released on Oct. 21, 2021, the same day he was transferred to a Nevada prison, two months after he was sentenced to one to two and a half years in a plea bargain with prosecutors.
Nevada prison officials said Foster was released only because a judge allowed him 729 days in prison before his sentence.
Fifteen months later, 36-year-old bartender Foster was dating a woman from Grants Pass. On January 24th, her friend became concerned when she hadn’t seen her for several days. A friend of hers went to the woman’s house and found her beaten unconscious and handcuffed to death. The victim remains in hospital on Wednesday in critical condition.
The incident hit Grants Pass, a town of 40,000 with high unemployment and poverty rates and layoffs in the public safety sector as the timber industry declined. Police say they are doing everything in their power to find Foster.
“We are focused on getting this man caught and brought to justice,” Police Chief Warren Hensman said at a press conference on Wednesday. “This is an all-out operation,” he said.
That night, Grants Pass police, sheriff’s deputies, an Oregon State Police SWAT team, and federal agents raided Wolf Creek, amid forested mountains and near Interstate 5. . Investigators seized Foster’s car, which had run over an embankment in an apparent attempt to cover it up, and arrested a 68-year-old woman for obstruction of justice. But Foster had disappeared.
Investigators believe he helped her escape. The next day, police announced they were using a dating app to find someone who could help him avoid police or find another victim. Authorities offered Foster a $2,500 reward and set up an information window.
Hensman said Wednesday that he received a call from a taxi company saying a man had asked for a taxi from Sunny Valley, just south of Wolf Creek. The police were checking the surrounding houses to confirm the safety of the residents.
However, through the window of one house, he saw what appeared to be a crime scene.
They went inside and found the bodies of Richard Lee Barron Jr. and Donald Owen Griffiths, who were killed between Monday night and Tuesday morning, according to Oregon State Police Capt. Kyle Kennedy.
“Unfortunately, we have witnessed a brutal scene, and we are dealing with it,” Kennedy said. There is no evidence that Foster knew Barron or Griffith, who lived with him, prior to his murder.
Several items were taken and a man’s dog was also stolen. On Tuesday, Foster was spotted 20 miles south in Grants Pass with his dog.
Police in helmets and bulletproof vests rushed into the neighborhood with rifles and at least one armored vehicle. They searched the nearby house where the woman had been found the previous week.
According to the police chief, the situation was tense.
He said, “This man has brutally murdered two innocent people in Sunny Valley and we don’t know when he will stop. We are urging the surrounding residents to evacuate.
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