Deadly force ruled justified in Cave Junction shooting

Deadly force ruled justified in Cave Junction shooting. (Obituary Photo Courtesy

The Oregon State Police have concluded their investigation into a fatal November 2018 shooting in the Cave Junction area. Josephine County District Attorney Ryan Mulkins has found a man justified in his use of deadly force from the incident.

The investigation into the death of Richard O'Coyne, 46, indicated that he was driving a Ford Expedition with an adult male passenger on the day of the shooting, November 2, 2018. According to the Josephine County District Attorney's Office report, Ocoyne drove to R-Hogg-Farm motorcycle shop in Cave Junction that Friday morning. Once there, he fired a gun from inside his car at the front door of the motorcycle shop. The bullet went through the door, striking a glass case inside and traveling all the way toward the back of the shop.

Evidence suggests that O'Coyne's motivation for shooting at the shop was from a prior dispute over a motorcycle in the store.

O'Coyne then drove to the home of Christopher Lorne at 162 Kenrose Lane in Cave Junction, arriving just after 7:30 that morning. He parked his SUV approximately 10 to 15 feet from the front window of the home, where Lorne was asleep inside. After parking, O'Coyne fired two shots with an M-15 rifle towards the residence.

Lorne was woken up by the shots fired, and looked out of his bedroom window to see O'Coyne pointing the rifle in his direction, according to the report.

While still in bed, Lorne retrieved a .45 caliber handgun and fired approximately four shots at O'Coyne. Multiple shots fired by Lorne hit O'Coyne's car. One of the shots struck O'Coyne in the head, killing him.

Lorne then called 911 to report the incident.

According to the report, the passenger in O'Coyne's car reported being asleep at the time the two arrived at the Cave Junction home. The unnamed passenger reported that he was awoken by O'Coyne yelling profanities at the home and handling his M-15 rifle. The passenger corroborated that O'Coyne fired two shots at the house, and reported that after O'Coyne fired his gun, someone inside the home returned fire. The passenger then got out of the car to avoid the returned fire. That person was not injured from the incident.

O'Coyne was a prior acquaintance of Lorne's and had even previously lived on Lorne's property, according to the report. O'Coyne had a prior dispute with Lorne over the ownership of a motorcycle, which is the suggested cause of the shooting.

Analysis of O'Coyne's urine revealed the presence of methamphetamine, cyclobenzaprine, cannabinoids, and LSD.

The DA is charged with the duty of reviewing incidents where police and citizens use deadly, physical force, to determine if the use of force was consistent under Oregon Law. The DA reports that during this incident, Lorne was justified in using deadly physical force under the circumstances he encountered.

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