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Talent man in custody after fatal shooting outside Ashland's Stratford Inn

The Ashland Police Department says that a man is dead after a shooting in the parking lot of the Stratford Inn early Monday morning.

Posted: Nov 23, 2020 9:27 AM
Updated: Dec 1, 2020 10:44 AM

ASHLAND, Ore. — The Ashland Police Department says that a man is dead after a shooting in the parking lot of the Stratford Inn early Monday morning.

Police and firefighters responded to reports of the shooting just before 4:30 a.m., finding a man lying with a single gunshot wound to the chest. Ashland Fire & Rescue tried to stabilize the man, but he was "beyond help," APD said.

The suspected shooter was still at the scene, and APD immediately detained him for interview. The suspect, identified as 47-year-old Robert Paul Keegan of Talent, was later taken into custody.

Forensics teams were on the scene near the intersection of Siskiyou Boulevard and Sherman Street on Monday morning, but had cleared the area by 10 a.m.

"The suspect and the victim were both guests at the Stratford Inn," Ashland Police said in a statement. "The investigation indicates that Keegan and the victim, who did not know each other, were engaged in an argument in the parking lot when Keegan pulled a gun from his coat and fired a single shot, striking the victim in the chest."

While police have identified the victim, APD said that the agency will not release his identity out of respect for family and friends, who have just been notified. Chief Tighe O'Meara later said that the victim was 19 years old.

NewsWatch 12 confirmed that both Keegan and the victim were displaced by the Almeda Fire, and had each been staying in the Stratford Inn for temporary housing.

Keegan is being lodged in the Jackson County Jail on charges of Murder in the Second Degree, Manslaughter in the First Degree, Reckless Endangering, and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon.

Chief O'Meara told NewsWatch 12 that this is the first shooting in Ashland this year, and the first murder within the city for an even longer period of time.

Friends of the victim gathered outside of the Stratford on Monday evening to hold a candlelight vigil in his memory.

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