ASHLAND, Ore. — It’s the first murder in Ashland in 7 years and the case continues to confound investigators.
Ashland Police say 23-year-old David Michael Grubbs of Ashland was found dead on the bike path in Hunter Park with what they are calling violent injuries. The suspicious death, discovered in the early evening on November 20th, was ruled a homicide.
The examination of the body revealed that Grubbs was killed by multiple sharp force injuries to the head and neck. The doctor says Grubbs was nearly decapitated in the attack. The murder weapon is said to be a medium to large sized weapon.
Police have asked for outside help, including a forensic anthropologist from Pennsylvania. Dr. Steven Symes from the Mercy Hurst Archeological Institute and he is a national expert in knife and blade wounds. Ashland Police also invited a forensic expert from University of Oregon, Jene McLoughlin. Ashland Police say they hope Symes can help in determining a murder weapon and possibly how the incident could have occurred, but they say this is only one part in their continuing efforts. Both experts will return to their home labs and review their findings there.
While police followed several leads and talked to witnesses, a suspect has still not been named. Police have interviewed hundreds of people since the murder, and looked for anyone who was on the bike path that night, but have not been able to find a suspect. They say as weeks go by, new leads are harder to find.
In the meantime, friends of David Grubbs gathered signatures for a petition to install lights along the bike path in the hopes of preventing future criminal acts where Grubbs was murdered. The petition was presented to Ashland City Council in December. The council said they are going to deliberate more on this petition. The city manager says they’ve already been looking into installing lights in that area ever since Grubbs was murdered.