Man charged in Ashland murder seeks extradition delay

Othon Robert Campos, Jr. is being held in Clark County, Wash.

A man accused of murdering an Ashland resident earlier this month and fleeing to Vancouver, Wash., before he was captured is seeking to delay his extradition to Jackson County, officials said.

Othon Robert Campos Jr., 41, has been charged with killing 62-year-old Frank Damiano inside his trailer just outside Ashland on Oct. 10.

Investigators believe Campos and Merlin Elmo Bound III, 34, entered Damiano's trailer on Oct. 10 with the intention of robbing him. For reasons unknown, the robbery turned into a homicide, sending Campos on the run to Vancouver, police say.

Bound was arrested days later and lodged in the Jackson County Jail without bail on charges of murder, robbery and burglary.

Detectives were able to develop leads pointing to Campos' whereabouts. They arrested him the morning of Oct. 19.

Since then, Campos has been indicted by a Jackson County grand jury on charges of aggravated murder, robbery and burglary.

He has remained lodged in the Clark County Jail without bail. He will be extradited to Jackson County, but he is seeking a delay, a process that could take four to six weeks, Jackson County District Attorney Beth Heckert said.

"This won't affect the case," Heckert said. "It won't have any impact on the ongoing investigation."

Heckert, who will prosecute the murder, will continue building a case against the pair. Both Campos and Bound could face life in prison if found guilty of the crimes.

Before Campos can be extradited to the local jail, police and prosecutors here must prove that he is, in fact, the person suspected of the crime.

This means local law enforcement will send Campos' fingerprints, physical descriptions and other identifying factors to Clark County.

Campos will then appear before a judge, who will determine whether to release him to Jackson County authorities.

Heckert is confident Campos will be returned for his arraignment in Jackson County.

"It might delay us getting him here by four to six weeks, depending on how fast we get the information to them," Heckert said.

Heckert has said Campos is suspected of being the one who committed the murder. Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters has described the cause of Damiano's death as "sharp-force trauma."

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 541-776-4471 or cconrad@mailtribune.com.


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