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Care home resident suffers critical hammer attack

Two men lived a couple rooms from each other

May 14, 2014

The News-Register staff

Editor's Note: Mr. McKenzie died of injuries sustained in this incident. See story in News.

A 51-year-old resident of Sheridan's Deer Meadows Assisted Living Center has been arrested in a brutal hammer attack that sent a fellow resident to the hospital with critical injuries.

Yamhill County sheriff's deputies said Ronald McKenzie, 51, was found lying on the floor of his room, in a pool of blood, about 2 a.m. Wednesday. They said it appeared he had been struck multiple times in the head with a hammer, which was found lying next to him.

McKenzie was transported by ambulance to Salem Memorial Hospital, where he was listed in critical condition. 

Deputies took fellow resident Nathan Brewer, also 51, into custody at the scene. They charged him with first-degree assault, a Measure 11 crime carrying a lengthy mandatory-minimum prison sentence on conviction.

He was lodged on $150,000 bail. He is scheduled for arraignment at 1:20 p.m. Thursday in Yamhill County Circuit Court.

Investigation is continuing. See Friday's edition for additional details.

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