Oregon mother’s death ruled suicide

Aug 6, 2014, 6:51 PM | Updated: 6:51 pm

Officials say an Oregon mother who was the focus of a region-wide manhunt committed suicide.

The Oregon State Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed Wednesday Jennifer Huston died of asphyxiation and the manner of her death was listed as a suicide.

Huston’s body was found Tuesday about 40 yards from her SUV by a property owner in rural Sheridan Oregon, a remote area in Yamhill County southwest of Portland.

Deputies found an empty box of sleeping pills and personal items were found inside the vehicle, said to Captain Jeff Kosmicki of the Newberg-Dundee Police Department.

Kosmicki says searchers also found a note to her family in the SUV.

“Based on the totality of the evidence, detectives and the medical examiner have concluded that Jennifer had been deceased fairly close to the time she was reported missing,” Kosmicki said.

Huston’s family issued the following statement following Jennifer’s death:

Our hearts ache today.

We have lost our first born child. We have lost a wife and a mother.

We don’t know what lead Jennifer to this dark place and to this end and perhaps never will understand this.

We are incredibly thankful to family, friends, community and media for their searching, supporting and getting the information out that lead to locating Jennifer’s car and finding Jennifer.

Additionally, we are grateful for the support of those who took the time share their words of encouragement and prayers on FaceBook and helped fund the extensive search efforts.

This community really came together to support this effort as so many could relate to a mother of two small children and a husband desperately looking for his wife.

We also appreciate all the efforts of the Newberg-Dundee Police Department with support from other law enforcement agencies, on our behalf to find Jennifer.

Lastly I’d like to thank the media for the viral coverage to get the message out of our search for Jennifer. We appreciated the sensitivity to our desperate search for her.

At this time we are respectfully ask for privacy from the media for Kallen, the boys and our extended family and friends.

The 38-year-old woman was last seen last July 24 running errands. A search was conducted in Yamhill County and along the Willamette River.

The search spread to Washington earlier this week when a couple reported they saw a woman matching Huston’s description on a ferry traveling from Anacortes to the San Juan Islands. Investigators checked surveillance video but were unable to confirm the sighting.

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Oregon mother’s death ruled suicide