Shooting death of former officer elevated to murder

A Medford woman now faces a murder charge in the death of a former Medford police officer shot dead in his home during a breakup of their relationship.

A Jackson County grand jury Thursday indicted Charlene Leuzetia Meixner, 45, on a murder charge and three lesser manslaughter charges stemming from the Oct. 20 slaying of Ray Glen Leach, 61.

The murder charge alleges that Meixner intentionally killed Leach with a gunshot to the chest inside Leach's home on Delta Waters Road.

Meixner had been jailed on a lesser charge of first-degree manslaughter after allegedly admitting to shooting Leach.

Jackson County Deputy District Attorney David Hoppe said he couldn't discuss the facts and evidence that led prosecutors to seek the murder charge.

Meixner also faces single counts of first-degree and second-degree manslaughter. The grand jury handed up a second count of second-degree manslaughter based on the theory that Meixner aided in a suicide attempt by Leach, a charge upon which Hoppe said he could not elaborate.

The charges cover various scenarios and give a jury conviction options should the case go to trial.

Meixner telephoned police about 8 p.m. Oct. 20, saying Leach was shot in the chest, authorities said. She allegedly also told her son that she shot Leach, prosecutors said in court.

Police have declined to discuss a motive in the case.

Police in August were called to Leach's home during a domestic dispute during which a .38-caliber handgun — the same gun Meixner allegedly used to shoot Leach — was taken from Meixner and returned eight days later.

Meixner is being held in the Jackson County Jail without bail.

Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470, or e-mail

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