COOS BAY — Murder suspect James Jay Thomasson was released from Bay Area Hospital Monday evening. Thomasson was transported to Coos County Jail and lodged on a charge of murder.
Late Monday afternoon, Coos County District Attorney Paul Frasier filed information charging Thomasson with the offense of murder. Frasier said he anticipates that he will be arraigned on the charge today in Coos County Circuit Court.
Investigators are continuing to work the case. In addition to those agencies who responded yesterday, the Coos County Sheriff's Office is also assisting in the investigation.
Thomasson, 29. was arrested Sunday afternoon in connection with the brutal murder of Elmer Lloyd Dennis, 80, of Coos Bay at a residence located at 1222 Minnesota Ave. in the Englewood area of Coos Bay. Although the exact cause of death has been withheld pending the completion of an autopsy, Fraser attributed the cause as "homicidal violence." Thomasson is Dennis' grandson. Thomasson was living on the property and was discovered Sunday by police hiding under a deck attached to the residence, according to Frasier.
Thomasson did not comply with officers' requests to come out from under the deck resulting in officers having to deploy a Taser to gain his compliance. Thomasson was eventually transported to Bay Area Hospital for unknown injuries. Thomasson was admitted as a patient at the hospital for observation and police posted a watch over Thomasson at the hospital.
The Coos County Major Crimes Task Force was activated and officers from the Coos Bay Police Department, Oregon State Police, North Bend Police Department, Coquille Tribal Police, the Medical Examiner's Office and the District Attorney's Office responded to assist with the investigation. The Coos Bay Police is leading the investigation.
Anyone with information regarding this homicide is encouraged to contact Coos Bay Police.
In 2010, Thomasson's older brother pleaded no contest to slashing the throat of an auctioneer in Marion County.
Jeremiah D. Thomasson was indicted on 11 separate charges for the June 16, 2009 incident. In addition to attempted murder, he was indicted on one count first-degree assault, five counts unlawful use of a weapon and four counts of menacing.
The Woodburn Auction employee was wrapping up a sale of small farm equipment and other items shortly before noon when police said Thomasson attacked him and cut his throat with a box knife. The victim survived his wounds.