Police Make Arrest After Death Investigation in Northeast Salem

Posted on December 4, 2021

DATE:      Friday, December 3, 2021

Salem, Ore. — On Thursday, December 2, 2021, at approximately 10:05 a.m., Salem Police officers responded to a suspicious activity report at a northeast Salem apartment complex. A resident of the Claxter Court Apartments reported seeing an unknown individual remove a large suitcase from another apartment. The individual placed the suitcase into the trunk of a vehicle parked in the complex parking lot. The witness further stated the resident of that apartment, identified as Richard Eugene Flennory, age 59, had not been seen for the last several days.

When officers arrived, they located the vehicle belonging to Flennory inside the complex.  Upon opening the trunk, a suitcase containing a body was found. Members of the Salem Police Department Violent Crimes Unit responded to investigate the death. Detectives were later able to positively identify the body as Flennory.

During the investigation, two individuals were found living inside Flennory’s apartment. One occupant, Linson Lavell Johnson, 51, was taken into custody on an outstanding parole violation warrant. Through the investigation, detectives learned that Flennory had multiple health issues which may have contributed to his death. When Johnson discovered Flennory deceased, he placed Flennory inside the suitcase and into the trunk of the vehicle to avoid a police response.

An autopsy performed by the state medical examiner’s office determined there was no indication of foul play.

Johnson is being charged with abuse of a corpse in the second degree and parole violation. He is currently in custody at the Linn County Jail on the parole violation warrant.

All further inquiries can be directed to the Marion County District Attorney’s Office and the Oregon State Medical Examiner Division.

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