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MailTribune.com
  • Robbery was motive for murder, sheriff says

    Second suspect was a person of interest from the beginning
  • Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters is confident robbery was the motive behind the slaying of an Ashland man earlier this month.
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  • Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters is confident robbery was the motive behind the slaying of an Ashland man earlier this month.
    Now it's up to the courts to decide the fate of two Medford men who've been arrested and charged with Frank Damiano's murder, he said.
    "I think at this point we have closure to this case, except for the trial," Winters said at a press conference Monday.
    Roommates Othon Robert Campos Jr., 41, and Merlin Elmo Bound III, 34, are accused of robbing and killing 62-year-old Damiano of Ashland. Bound was arrested at his Medford home on Oct. 15 and remains in the Jackson County Jail without bail. He has been indicted on two counts of murder, two counts of first-degree robbery and one count of first-degree burglary. Court records show a pre-trial conference has been scheduled for Nov. 4.
    Campos was arrested Saturday in Vancouver, Wash., and remains in the Clark County Jail awaiting extradition. A grand jury indicted him on the same charges as Bound last week, along with an additional charge of aggravated felony murder.
    "He became a person of interest on Oct. 11," Winters said. "At that time we couldn't discuss the fact we were looking for him."
    After the sheriff's department put out word to police agencies in Vancouver and Portland — where Campos was thought to have traveled — U.S. marshals tracked him to an undisclosed location in Vancouver. Winters wouldn't comment on specifics regarding the arrest but praised law enforcement for being able to track Campos down.
    "This was handled expeditiously and very quickly," Winters said.
    Jackson County District Attorney Beth Heckert has said Campos is suspected of being the one who committed the murder. He likely will be extradited to Jackson County to face his charges sometime this week unless he fights the extradition.
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