Investigators confirm Eagle Point deaths were murder, suicide

Jackson County sheriff's investigators have closed the case on a murder-suicide reported Sunday in Eagle Point.

Jackson County medical examiner Dr. James Olson determined Liesa J. Werner, 53, of Eagle Point, died from a single rifle gunshot wound to the chest. The shooting was ruled a homicide, a news release today reported.

Eugene A. Koch, 55, from Eureka, Calif. died from a single rifle gunshot wound to the chest, in what Olson determined was a suicide.

Investigators say Koch shot Werner Sunday night and then turned a gun on himself.

According to sheriff's department reports, Koch drove from Eureka and showed up unexpectedly at 5 p.m. at Werner's home in the 2300 block of Butte Falls Highway, about two miles east of Highway 62. He never came back out.

Police said family members told them the two had broken off a long-term relationship recently, which left Koch distraught and suicidal.

Jackson County sheriff's spokeswoman Andrea Carlson said the investigation into the case has been closed, though not before detectives looked at it from various angles to determined what happened.

"You want to make sure that it was in fact (a murder-suicide)," Carlson said. "You have to be careful when investigating suicides."

Carlson said the department treats all suicides as potential homicides.

— Chris Conrad

Share This Story