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Police ID woman killed near Winchester Bay

May 2, 2013


WINCHESTER BAY — A woman slain on the southern Oregon coast was identified Thursday as a retired auditor from California.

The Douglas County Major Crime Team said Kirsten Elaine Englund, 57, of Castro Valley, Calif., was found dead Sunday at the Winchester Bay Wayfinding Point, located along U.S. Highway 101 about 3 miles south of Reedsport. A couple discovered Englund's body in blackberry bushes at a point that's near the historic Umpqua Lighthouse and is a popular place for whale watching.

The police would not say how Englund was killed.

Jeffrey Boyce, 30, of North Bend, has been described by police as the prime suspect in the case. He was arrested in Northern California late Monday after allegedly carjacking a man at gunpoint.

Boyce is also believed to be a Boston bombing sympathizer who had been trying to reach the Russian consulate in San Francisco to seek asylum, authorities said. His mother called police to warn them that her son is mentally ill and had been raving that the government was out to get him.

Rohnert Park, Calif., police Sgt. Aaron Johnson said a truck that Boyce was driving before the carjacking contained more than 200 rounds of assault rifle-style bullets and a loaded .22-caliber rifle.

Investigators have yet to say how Englund and Boyce might have crossed paths. A brother-in-law told The World newspaper of Coos Bay this week that Englund had traveled to Oregon to visit a son who attends Oregon State University.

Englund's relatives released a statement Thursday, saying they are devastated by the “heinous, cowardly and senseless crime.”

Englund, who was a triplet, graduated from the University of California at Berkeley and got a master's degree in business administration from San Francisco State. She worked as an auditor for more than 25 years before retiring in 2008.

She had recently been serving as a board member of the Castro Valley Arts Foundation, relatives said, and enjoyed cards, traveling, outdoor activities, and artistic pursuits such as sculpting and photography.

“We cannot begin to describe the deep void that we will have without her,” the statement said.

She is survived by two sons, a stepdaughter and six siblings.

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