Eugene woman slips out of police shackles, but her freedom is brief

She is suspected in the theft of power tools from a Rogue River store

ROGUE RIVER — A Eugene woman arrested last week as a suspect in the theft of $380 worth of power tools from a Rogue River hardware store twisted her wrists and ankles in shackles until they bled, then managed to slip free, police said.

Cody Nicole Murrey, 21, ran out the front door of the Rogue River Police Department, but was tackled in the parking lot, police Chief Ken Lewis said.

"She didn't get more than 15, 20 feet," he said.

Following her second capture, Murrey was booked in the Jackson County Jail on charges of second-degree theft, resisting arrest, escape and illegal possession of a firearm. She is no longer listed in the jail. Court records show she has a pretrial hearing scheduled for Oct. 22.

Lewis said Murrey was arrested Thursday when an investigation linked her to a shoplifting incident the day before at Main Building Supply, 100 Broadway St.

Store officials reported $380 worth of rechargeable power tool batteries had been stolen. Surveillance cameras showed a woman and man leaving the store. Police believed the man lived nearby on First Street.

On Friday, a store employee reported seeing a 2005 Cadillac Escalade with a trailer loaded with suspicious cargo parked in front of a home in the 300 block of First Street. Lewis drove to the house to investigate and found the trailer had been packed with power tools, air compressors and other construction equipment.

Four of the power tools matched the stolen battery packs, police said. Power tools are common items in thefts, as they are easy to sell, police said.

Murrey, who matched the description of the suspected shoplifter but had apparently dyed her hair overnight, came out of the house, Lewis said.

When he confronted and tried to arrest her, Murrey fought back, breaking free from his grasp. Lewis sprayed her with pepper spray and, suspecting that others had helped either load or unload the trailer, retreated across the street to his patrol car to call for assistance.

After Lewis took Murrey into custody, she asked him to "hold onto her" while she searched the Escalade's front seat for her cellphone, which she claimed had digital photos on it that would exonerate her from the crime. Lewis put her in the back of his patrol car as backup from the Oregon State Police and the Jackson County Sheriff's Department arrived.

"She continued to profess her innocence. She was getting really upset," Lewis said. "She started kicking the windows."

Officers found a loaded .38-caliber pistol, knife and cellphone in the Escalade's front seat after tow truck operators loading the vehicle onto their truck pointed them out. The operators later claimed they had seen the muzzle of a second weapon sticking from a backpack in the vehicle, but that has not yet been confirmed as an official search warrant has not yet been issued.

Police took Murrey, who initially gave a Cave Junction address, to an interview room at the Rogue River Police Department before taking her to the Jackson County Jail, Lewis said. During the wait, Murrey complained that restraints on her wrists and ankles were too tight, so police loosened them.

Lewis said Murrey twisted her ankles and wrists in the cuffs for 20 minutes until she drew blood and slipped out of the restraints. She then ran out of the police department's front doors, but was tackled in the parking lot, rearrested and taken to jail, he said.

Police have tried to contact the SUV's registered owner, Mathew David Granger of Grants Pass. Granger, a registered sex offender, is wanted on an outstanding felony warrant, Lewis reported.

As of Tuesday, Rogue River police had not received any calls on either the Cadillac Escalade, the trailer or the construction equipment, which police estimate has a combined value of $35,000 to $40,000.

Reach reporter Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or by email at

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