The Oregon Department of Justice (DOJ) today announced the conclusion of an investigation related to the use of deadly force by members of the Oregon State Police and Lake County Sheriff’s Office, which resulted in the death of Isaac Matheney on January 1, 2021.
Oregon DOJ was asked by Lake County District Attorney Ted Martin to assume all prosecution responsibilities. This is the first time a member of law enforcement has been investigated under one of Oregon’s new law enforcement reform laws, HB 4301, which was passed by the Oregon legislature in 2020.
At the time of the incident, Matheney was involved in a standoff with police after allegedly robbing a convenience store in Silverlake. After a thorough investigation of the incident, Senior Assistant Attorney General Christian Stringer presented the case to a Lake County Grand Jury. The grand jury returned a “not true bill,” which means they believed criminal charges against the officers who shot and killed Matheney are not warranted.
The grand jury’s role was solely to determine whether the involved officers’ conduct warranted criminal charges; questions regarding matters that are civil or administrative in nature were beyond the scope of the investigation and the grand jury’s review.
Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum thanked the Klamath County Major Crimes Team, the Oregon State Police Crime Lab, and Klamath County Sheriff’s Sergeant Ryan Kaber for their efforts in leading the investigation and the Lake County grand jurors for their service.