GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — A suspect in a violent kidnapping in Oregon died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound Tuesday night after being taken into custody following a standoff with law enforcement, a police spokesman said.
Grants Pass Police Department Lt. Jeff Hattersley told KTVL-TV that Benjamin Obadiah Foster, 36, died at a hospital hours after he was taken into custody in Grants Pass, Oregon.
Foster barricaded himself under a house as officers from four agencies concentrated in the area, set up a command post and assembled a SWAT team while attempting to secure his surrender beginning Tuesday afternoon.
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Just before 8 p.m., Hattersley said the situation had been resolved but did not immediately confirm whether Foster had been arrested. Police later confirmed Foster was in custody, but a little more than an hour later said he had succumbed to his injuries.
Hattersley said authorities received “credible information” that Foster had entered the home where a woman was found unconscious, bound and near death on Jan. 24, The Daily Courier reported. She was hospitalized in critical condition.
As police gathered at the home where Foster was located, some area residents received a notification to shelter in place, the Daily Courier reported.
Foster was spotted Tuesday morning walking a dog in the Grants Pass area, according to a Grants Pass Police Department Facebook post.
Last Thursday, law enforcement raided a property in the unincorporated community of Wolf Creek, but Foster, who had been staying on family property there, slipped away. Forested mountains surround the community, but investigators believe that instead of disappearing solo into the wilderness, Foster had help getting out of the area.
Grants Pass is a town of some 40,000 in southwest Oregon next to Interstate 5.
In 2019, before moving to Oregon, Foster held his then-girlfriend captive inside her Las Vegas apartment for two weeks. He initially was charged with five felonies, including assault and battery, and faced decades in prison upon conviction.
Foster reached a deal with Clark County prosecutors in August 2021 that allowed him to plead guilty to one felony count of battery and a misdemeanor count of battery constituting domestic violence.
A judge sentenced him to up to 2 1/2 years in a Nevada prison. But after the 729 days he had spent in jail awaiting trial were factored into his punishment, Foster was left to serve less than 200 additional days in state custody.