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Murder defendant turns 18 and comes to local jail

Published on October 11, 2017 5:50PM

PENDLETON — Murder defendant Evan John Freel of Milton-Freewater now is in the Umatilla County Jail, Pendleton.

Freel was in juvenile custody at the Northern Oregon Regional Correctional Facility, the Dalles. But Tuesday he turned 18, aging up so he now awaits trial while in the local jail.

Freel also has undergone psychological evaluation and treatment at the Oregon State Hospital, Salem, so he could participate in his own defense. Circuit Court Judge Christopher Brauer in September found Freel had the mental capacity to proceed.

Circuit court records show Freel’s next hearing is Nov. 16.

The state has accused Freel of killing his 5-month old son, Dominic, on June 8, 2016. The search warrant affidavit from Milton-Freewater officer Morgan Dunlap stated a medical examination of the baby’s body showed multiple injuries consistent with what Freel told police he did to quiet his crying son.

Freel has pleaded not guilty to one count each of murder and first-degree criminal mistreatment in the baby’s death.


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