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Gold Hill murder suspect might argue self-defense

Wiley River Foxx

The second-degree murder case against Wiley River Foxx is scheduled to go in front of a Jackson County Circuit Court judge for a pre-trial hearing Jan. 24.

Foxx, 18, is accused of fatally shooting Thomas Watters, 24, of Gold Hill, on Aug. 19.

Foxx pleaded not guilty and continues to be held in the Jackson County Jail without bail.

Defense lawyer Larry Roloff took over Foxx’s case in September. Justin Rosas was retained initially, then Donald Scales was court-appointed to represent Foxx before Roloff was retained.

Roloff filed a document with the court last month to report that a justification defense will be used if the case goes to trial. This type of defense applies to instances of self-defense or defense of third persons.

Roloff cited Oregon cases that support Foxx’s not guilty plea as well as a justification defense. Two were decisions made by the Court of Appeals of the State of Oregon.

State vs. Burns found that the jury should be allowed to “determine the truth from among conflicting available inferences.” And in State vs. Anderson, even though the defendant denied having committed homicide the jurors could still consider it being an act of self-defense if there is evidence the suspect’s action was ‘legally justified as self-defense.”

Roloff asked for a pre-trial hearing to be rescheduled in January.

“The defendant is charged with murder,” Roloff wrote in his request to the court. “There is a lot of investigation that needs to be done before a pre-trial would be useful.”