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Coos County Major Crimes Team Investigating Inmate Death at Coos County Jail
R. Paul Frasier
Coos County District Attorney
(541) 396-3121 ext. 257

Photograph link valid 30 days - Source: Coos County Sheriff's Office
The Coos County Major Crimes Team is investigating the apparent self-inflicted strangulation death Friday morning of a 71-year old man at the Coos County Jail. The man was being held in custody at the jail since November 7, 2011 following his arrest by Oregon State Police (OSP) on Attempted Murder and Assault in the First Degree charges.
On November 25, 2011 at approximately 5:35 a.m. Coos County corrections deputies were serving breakfast when they found ROBERT MELVIN WALKER, age 71, unresponsive in his jail cell with a ligature around his neck. Deputies, who last saw WALKER alone in his cell about an hour earlier, notified emergency medical personnel to respond to the jail and started CPR. WALKER was pronounced deceased by EMTs after they arrived.
WALKER was arrested by OSP November 7th related to an investigation into a shooting of a 40-year old man who was riding his bicycle on Highway 101 near Bandon. WALKER and the shooting victim knew each other and allegedly had an ongoing dispute.
An autopsy is pending.
The Coos County Major Crimes Team consists of detectives from Oregon State Police, Coos County Sheriff's Office, Coos Bay Police Department, Bandon Police Department, North Bend Police Department, and Coos County District Attorney's Office.
OSP Detective Brian Assmus is the lead investigator on this case. No other information for release pending the ongoing investigation.